Drawing on hundreds of diaries and letters of diverse young Americans--from barmaids to belles, sharecroppers to cowboys--this book explores how exuberant young people and scheming party bosses relied on each other from the 1840s to the turn of the twentieth century. It also explains why this era ended so dramatically and asks if aspects of that strange period might be useful today.
In a vivid evocation of this formative but forgotten world, Jon Grinspan recalls a time when struggling young citizens found identity and maturity in democracy.
|Publisher:||The University of North Carolina Press|
|Sold by:||Barnes & Noble|
|File size:||8 MB|
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This sprightly, well-researched book is a delight to read and notably thought-provoking. By recasting what has been called the golden age of American democracy in terms of youth or age rather than partisanship itself, The Virgin Vote tells a story about youth that is not just about a single cohort or a cultural moment, but captures a wide array of cultural and political phenomena from 1840 to 1900. It's Piaget meets political history, and it seems long overdue.--David Waldstreicher, City University of New York