Roger Sherman and the Creation of the American Republic

Overview


One of leading figures of his day, Roger Sherman was a member of the five-man committee that drafted the Declaration of Independence and an influential delegate at the Constitutional Convention. As a Representative and Senator in the new republic, he had a hand in determining the proper scope of the national government's power as well as drafting the Bill of Rights. In Roger Sherman and the Creation of the American Republic, Mark David Hall explores Sherman's political theory and shows how it informed his many ...
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Roger Sherman and the Creation of the American Republic

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Overview


One of leading figures of his day, Roger Sherman was a member of the five-man committee that drafted the Declaration of Independence and an influential delegate at the Constitutional Convention. As a Representative and Senator in the new republic, he had a hand in determining the proper scope of the national government's power as well as drafting the Bill of Rights. In Roger Sherman and the Creation of the American Republic, Mark David Hall explores Sherman's political theory and shows how it informed his many contributions to America's founding.

A close examination of Sherman's religious beliefs provides insight into how those beliefs informed his political actions. Hall shows that Sherman, like many founders, was influenced by Calvinist political thought, a tradition that played a role in the founding generation's opposition to Great Britain, and led them to develop political institutions designed to prevent corruption, promote virtue, and protect rights. Contrary to oft-repeated assertions that the founders advocated a strictly secular policy, Hall argues persuasively that most founders believed Christianity should play an important role in the new American republic.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"It is one of the many virtues of Mark David Hall s succinct, lucid monograph that he makes a convincing case for Sherman s significance without falling prey to the whining tone of special pleading that so often taints books examining neglected Founding Fathers...Hall has written an admirable introduction to Roger Sherman's life, political career, and role as a thinking politician...[An] excellent book."--Church History and Religious Culture

"Dr. Mark Hall offers a compelling Calvinist narrative to the formation of the American order in his recent political biography, Roger Sherman and the Creation of the American Republic... Hall's political biography of Roger Sherman is an excellent and heartily welcomed addition to this woefully neglected field of research." --Alan R. Crippen II, John Jay Institute

"As is, we have a book on Roger Sherman that religious and revolutionary historians should find useful." --Journal of Church and State

"A great book about a great but little known American. Professor Hall gracefully explains how one of the Founding Era's best politicians fully integrated his religious faith into a life of pragmatic and effective public service. Why can't more histories be this enjoyable to read?"--William R. Casto, Paul Whitfield Horn University Professor of Law, Texas Tech University

"Hardly the 'simple cobbler from Connecticut' portrayed on Broadway in 1776, Roger Sherman emerges from Professor Hall's excellent volume as deeply immersed in both Reformed theology and the practical politics of nation-building. Sherman's contributions to the American founding have been overlooked for too long, and Professor Hall has done a great service to remind us not only of the importance of Sherman himself but also of the Protestant Reformed tradition that he represented."--Donald L. Drakeman, author of Church, State, and Original Intent

"While most debates about the constitutional intent of our Founding Fathers focus on Madison, Franklin, Washington, and Jefferson, Mark David Hall expands our intellectual horizons with this detailed examination of the life and thought of Roger Sherman, the most important of the 'forgotten founders.' But Hall's research is more than just a biography of one man; he uses the person of Roger Sherman to reveal the deep-seated culture of Calvinism that influenced the original structure of our nation's government. This book is a must-read for anyone engaged in legal debates about the nature of the U.S. Constitution."--Anthony Gill, author of The Political Origins of Religious Liberty

"The best life of Connecticut's foremost Founding Father ever written." --The American Conservative

"In this thoughtful, compelling book, Mark David Hall not only demonstrates that Roger Sherman was one of the most influential Founding Fathers, but he also convincingly locates Sherman's politics in the Reformed Christian tradition. Sherman deserves recognition as an indispensable leader of the new American nation, and every student and scholar of the Revolutionary period would profit greatly from reading Hall's treatment of this distinguished Connecticut Patriot."--Thomas S. Kidd, author of Patrick Henry: First Among Patriots

"Elegantly written, carefully researched, and downright persuasive...Hall so brilliantly and strenuously challenges the consensus view that we should look forward to this book being banned from public schools across the country...it is a book worth reading."--Library of Law and Liberty

"This slim volume should find its way onto many syllabi. Clearly and engagingly written, itis perfect for undergraduates, who also respond enthusastically to the 'forgotten founder' trope. This fine study is recommended not only for students but also for scholars who believe they can understand the founding as a purely secular event." --The Journal of American History

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780190218706
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press
  • Publication date: 1/1/2015
  • Pages: 240
  • Sales rank: 695,003
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Mark David Hall is Herbert Hoover Distinguished Professor of Politics at George Fox University.

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Table of Contents

Chapter 1: The Old Puritan and a New Nation
Chapter 2: Reformed Political Theory in the American Founding
Chapter 3: Connecticut Politics and American Independence
Chapter 4: Achieving Independence
Chapter 5: ''An Eel by the Tail''
Chapter 6: Roger Sherman and the New National Government
Chapter 7: ''Philosophy may mislead you. Ask experience''
Notes
Appendix
Index

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