JFK – The Making Of Modern Politics

JFK – The Making Of Modern Politics

On both sides of the Atlantic, John F Kennedy continues to be invoked by today’s politicians in the hope that some of his magic might rub off on them. But, 50 years since his election, Andrew Marr asks whether JFK’s legacy has tarnished politics ever since.

The US election campaign of 1960 was the making of modern politics. It marked the triumph of style over substance, the manipulation of the media, the use of vast amounts of money to swing the vote, and the dumbing down of the issues to spoon-feed the electorate – all aspects of Kennedy’s campaign.

Andrew examines in detail exactly what Kennedy stood for, and goes in search of the substance that has long been obscured by the fascination with the Kennedy style.

He also examines how Kennedy embodied the hopes of a nation, and asks whether modern politics demands inspirational leaders rather than politicians bogged down in the details.

Kennedy’s soaring rhetoric set a standard that people yearn for their politicians to reach. In JFK – The Making Of Modern Politics, Andrew Marr looks afresh at the events of 1960 and provides a fascinating insight into politics today.


  • BBC One
  • BBC Two
  • BBC Three
  • ITV1
  • ITV2
  • 4
  • E4
  • Film4
  • More4
  • Five
  • Fiver
  • Sky1