Thomas Jefferson and the New Nation: A Biography

Thomas Jefferson and the New Nation: A Biography

by Merrill D. Peterson

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780199840526
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Publication date: 09/11/1986
Series: Galaxy Books
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
File size: 7 MB

About the Author

University of Virginia

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Thomas Jefferson and the New Nation 3.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Peterson has written as fine a one-volume biography of Jefferson as is possible, given the complexity and breadth of the subject. Peterson remains mostly fair to Jefferson, even if he always gives Jefferson the benefit of the doubt. In avoiding the fawning lionization of Dumas Malone, Peterson has done the rest of us a real service. Peterson is very readable and the book flows rather well; one never feels the sense that he or she is merely muddling through. The only shortcoming of the biography is that Peterson sometimes sacrifices a discussion of Jefferson's actions for explorations of Jefferson's thoughts when the two should have been combined. For example, Peterson spends more than a dozen pages tracing the origins of Jefferson's revolutionary thought (a fascinating, enlightening dozen pages, mind you) during a chapter dedicated to one of the most intellectually formative of Jefferson's life -- his years in Williamsburg as a law student and then as a member of the House of Burgesses, cutting his revolutionary teeth on the rhetoric of Patrick Henry and the charisma of Richard Henry Lee. Jefferson's involvement in Virginia's Committee of Correspondence and other seminal activities of the Virginia radicals get very little explication from Peterson, who is foremost concerned with how Jefferson reached his broader conclusions rather than his early implementation of those principles.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago