The Ideological Origins of the American Revolutionby Bernard Bailyn
To the original text of what has become a classic of American historical literature, Bernard Bailyn adds a substantial essay, "Fulfillment," as a Postscript. Here he discusses the intense, nation-wide debate on the ratification of the Constitution, stressing the continuities between that struggle over the foundations of the national government and the original principles of the Revolution. This detailed study of the persistence of the nation's ideological origins adds a new dimension to the book and projects its meaning forward into vital current concerns.
In every area of Bernard Bailyn's researchwhether Virginia society of the 17th century or the schools of early Americahe transformed what historians had hitherto thought about the subject. In The Ideological Origins of the American Revolution, the most famous of his works, Bailyn uncovered a set of ideas among the Revolutionary generation that most historians had scarcely known existed. These radical ideas about power and liberty, and deeply rooted fears of conspiracy, had propelled Americans in the 1760s and 1770s into the Revolution, Bailyn said. His book, which won the Pulitzer and Bancroft prizes in 1968, influenced an entire generation of historians. For many, it remains the most persuasive interpretation of the Revolution.
Gordon S. Wood
- Harvard University Press
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Meet the Author
Bernard Bailyn is Adams University Professor, Emeritus, and Director of the International Seminar on the History of the Atlantic World at Harvard University.
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Compelling reading for those who want to understand better the issues and arguments that drove the true American Revolution - that of ideas, not the war. Very interesting analysis of the key components leading up to the war and the framing of the new form of government for the United States. Extraordinary parallels between the actions and attitudes of the pro- and anti- British forces in the 1750s and 1760s and our own current political debate today. Great research and a plethora of references for those seeking additional information.
Whether the Bible or Old English Lit, or History, the context of societal events is a must for understanding. Bernard Bailyn gives life to the mindset of colonial pre-America, its' debates, writters and speeches of their time, from both continents plus noting historical writings that held sway. You won't find these informative historical references in the Common Core history curriculum.