The Comparative Approach to American History / Edition 1

Paperback (Print)
Buy New
Buy New from
Used and New from Other Sellers
Used and New from Other Sellers
from $2.08
Usually ships in 1-2 business days
(Save 96%)
Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (15) from $2.08   
  • New (6) from $11.15   
  • Used (9) from $2.08   


In the mid 1960s, C. Vann Woodward was asked to organize a program of broadcast lectures on US history for the Voice of America as part of a longer series designed to acquaint foreign audiences with leaders in American arts and sciences. Reasoning that a comparative approach "was peculiarly adapted to the interests and needs of foreign audiences," Woodward commissioned twenty-two noted scholars to cover classic topics in American history—the Civil War, the World Wars, slavery, immigration, and many others—but to add a comparative dimension by relating these topics to developments elsewhere in the world. The result was the 1968 Basic Books edition of The Comparative Approach to American History.

Now, three decades later, Oxford is very pleased to be reissuing this classic collection of historical essays in a paperback edition, with a new introduction by Woodward that discusses the decline and resurgence of comparative history since the 1960s.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"It is evident that comparing American history internationally is an idea whose time has returned. Perhaps Woodward's Comparative Approach will have a greater impact this time around. Its shortcomings and omissions are more obvious now, but so are its strengths: its call to make American history more cosmopolitan, its devotion to the nation as a unit of analysis, its still-provocative individual essays, its openness to a variety of comparative techniques, and its avoidance of specialized jargon. As we set out to broaden our audience and internationalize our outlook, we ought to profit from its example."—Carl J. Guameri, Reviews in American History

"In this changed environment Woodward's anthology, bypassed the first time around, has recovered its relevance. Rereading it today, we can find much to admire....Perhaps Woodward's Comparative Approach will have a greater impact this time around....As we set out to broaden our audience and internationalize our outlook, we ought to profit from its example."—Carl J. Guameri, Reviews in American History

"Professor Woodward's book is a major publishing event. It will make an exciting teaching device and will stimulate scholarship in many fields."—Michael G. Kammen, Cornell University

Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780195112603
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 11/28/1997
  • Edition description: REPRINT
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 384
  • Lexile: 1440L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 5.40 (w) x 8.10 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author

C. Vann Woodward, one of the preeminent American historians, is Emeritus Professor of History at Yale University. He is author or editor of numerous works, and is the series editor for The Oxford History of the United States.

Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

The Contributors
Introduction to the New Edition
1 The Comparability of American History 3
2 The Colonial Phase 18
3 The Enlightenment 34
4 The Revolution 47
5 The "Newness" of the New Nation 62
6 Frontiers 75
7 Immigration 91
8 Mobility 106
9 Slavery 121
10 Civil War 135
11 Reconstruction: Ultraconservative Revolution 146
12 The Negro since Freedom 160
13 Industrialization 175
14 Urbanization 187
15 Political Parties 206
16 The Coming of Big Business 220
17 Socialism and Labor 238
18 Imperialism 253
19 Social Democracy, 1910-1918 271
20 World War I 285
21 The Great Depression 296
22 World War II 315
23 The Cold War 328
24 The Test of Comparison 346
Index 359
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star


4 Star


3 Star


2 Star


1 Star


Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation


  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)