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How much of our political tradition can be absorbed and used by other peoples? Daniel Boorstin's answer to this question has been chosen by the Carnegie Corporation of New York for representation in American Panorama as one of the 350 books, old and new, most descriptive of life in the United States. He describes the uniqueness of American thought and explains, after a close look at the American past, why we have not produced and are not likely to produce grand political theories or successful propaganda. He also suggests what our attitudes must be toward ourselves and other countries if we are to preserve our institutions and help others to improve theirs.
". . . a fresh and, on the whole, valid interpretation of American political life."—Reinhold Niebuhr, New Leader
Introduction I. How Belief in the Existence of an American Theory Has Made a Theory Superfluous II. The Puritans: From Providence to Pride III. The American Revolution: Revolution without Dogma IV. The Civil War and the Spirit of Compromise V. The Mingling of Political and Religious Thought VI. Our Cultural Hypochondria and How To Cure It Suggestions for Further Reading Index