In Pursuit of Reason: the Life of Thomas Jefferson: The Life of Thomas Jefferson

In Pursuit of Reason: the Life of Thomas Jefferson: The Life of Thomas Jefferson

by Noble E. Cunningham
     
 

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"A major contribution." Washington Post
The authoritative single-volume biography of Thomas Jefferson, perhaps the most significant figure in American history. He was a complex and compelling man: a fervent advocate of democracy who enjoyed the life of a southern aristocrat and owned slaves, a revolutionary who became president, a believer in

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Overview

"A major contribution." Washington Post
The authoritative single-volume biography of Thomas Jefferson, perhaps the most significant figure in American history. He was a complex and compelling man: a fervent advocate of democracy who enjoyed the life of a southern aristocrat and owned slaves, a revolutionary who became president, a believer in states' rights who did much to further the power of the federal government. Drawing on the recent explosion of Jeffersonian scholarship and fresh readings of original sources, IN PURSUIT OF REASON is a monument to Jefferson that will endure for generations.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Cunningham succeeds admirably in his biography of Jefferson, intended for both scholars and general readers. The University of Missouri historian conveys not only the details of Jefferson's career as a politician and polymath, but the evolution of his thinking as expressed in Notes on the State of Virginia and other writings. He shows that Jefferson's belief in ``the sufficiency of reason for the care of human affairs'' sustained his political principles and his faith in progress and education. Cunningham, author of earlier books on the man and his era (The Image of Thomas Jefferson in the Public Eye, etc.), writes well and with evident authority in this rich work. Photos not seen by PW. History Book Club main selection. (May 29)
Library Journal
Finally we have a sensible one-volume biography of America's most multifaceted Founding Father. Cunningham, an expert on Jefferson's politics and presidency, has admirably condensed the variegated life and tumultuous times into a manageable and readable book. Cunningham's Jefferson is a man occasionally given to emotional turmoilas on the death of his wife and his flirtation with Maria Coswaybut mainly he is a personification of the Enlightenment's faith in human reason, progress, and education. It is a traditional interpretation, even conservativeJefferson's faults and mistakes are downplayed or excusedbut consistent with the weight of academic evidence. This is now the beginning biography for students and scholars alike. History Book Club main selection. Harry W. Fritz, History Dept., Univ. of Montana, Missoula

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780345353801
Publisher:
Random House Publishing Group
Publication date:
05/28/1988
Series:
Southern Biography Series
Edition description:
Reissue
Pages:
432
Sales rank:
916,753
Product dimensions:
6.01(w) x 9.18(h) x 0.90(d)

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