Faces of Revolution: Personalities and Themes in the Struggle for American Independence

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Overview

Pulitzer-Prize-winning author Bernard Bailyn brings us a book that combines portraits of American revolutionaries with a deft exploration of the ideas that moved them and still shape our society today.

From the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Voyagers to the West and The Idealogical Origins of the American Revolution comes a splendid new book that combines portraits of American revolutionaries--and one reviled Tory--with a deft exploration of the ideas that moved ...

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Faces of Revolution: Personalities & Themes in the Struggle for American Independence

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Overview

Pulitzer-Prize-winning author Bernard Bailyn brings us a book that combines portraits of American revolutionaries with a deft exploration of the ideas that moved them and still shape our society today.

From the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Voyagers to the West and The Idealogical Origins of the American Revolution comes a splendid new book that combines portraits of American revolutionaries--and one reviled Tory--with a deft exploration of the ideas that moved them and that still shape our society.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"An extraordinarily lucid and informative representation of the revolutionary age."
--The Chicago Tribune
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
The American Revolution was far from inevitable, argues Bailyn, Harvard professor and Pulitizer Prize-winning historian ( Voyagers to the West ), who contends that ideological passion and human will tipped the scales in favor of revolt. Hastening the rupture were John Adams's conviction that British policies were evil and bankrupt Quaker corset-maker Tom Paine's aggressive attack on those who feared severing ties with Mother England. In the book's eight masterful biographical sketches, we also meet Thomas Jefferson, shedding his ``deep conventionality'' for pragmatic political decision-making, and Boston shopkeeper Harbottle Dorr, compiler of a massive, annotated dossier of newspapers and pamphlets. Four thematic essays highlight the antifederalist challenge to the Constitution and the reactionary muddle in Britain whose ``every major institution was inadequate to its task.'' History Book Club alternate. (Sept.)
Library Journal
This book of essays comprises nine previously published articles on the American Revolution and an unpublished paper on the Constitution. Restating his well-known consensus thesis, Bailyn contends that an American people, united by a democratic, individualistic spirit, inevitably separated from the centralized authority of the British king and, refining their ideology, created a national government which safeguarded personal liberty. Though sometimes providing a compelling explanation for the motivations of Revolutionary leaders, Bailyn generally offers a simplistic view which largely ignores the many complex, conflicting interests within and between the American elite and the general populace. He adds little to his Ideological Origins of the American Revolution (LJ 4/15/67). Recommended for historiographical purposes. History Book Club alternate; previewed in Prepub Alert, LJ 5/1/90.-- David Szatmary, Univ. of Washington, Seattle
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780679736233
  • Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 9/28/1992
  • Edition description: 1st Vintage Books ed
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 320
  • Sales rank: 845,387
  • Product dimensions: 5.20 (w) x 7.98 (h) x 0.70 (d)

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