Tocqueville's Discovery of America

Tocqueville's Discovery of America

by Leo Damrosch
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Overview

Tocqueville's Discovery of America by Leo Damrosch

Alexis de Tocqueville is more quoted than read; commentators across the political spectrum invoke him as an oracle who defined America and its democracy for all times. But in fact his masterpiece, Democracy in America, was the product of a young man's open-minded experience of America at a time of rapid change. In Tocqueville's Discovery of America, the prizewinning biographer Leo Damrosch retraces Tocqueville's nine-month journey through the young nation in 1831–1832, illuminating how his enduring ideas were born of imaginative interchange with America and Americans, and painting a vivid picture of Jacksonian America.

Damrosch shows that Tocqueville found much to admire in the dynamism of American society and in its egalitarian ideals. But he was offended by the ethos of grasping materialism and was convinced that the institution of slavery was bound to give rise to a tragic civil war.

Drawing on documents and letters that have never before appeared in English, as well as on a wide range of scholarship, Tocqueville's Discovery of America brings the man, his ideas, and his world to startling life.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781429945738
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Publication date: 04/13/2010
Sold by: Macmillan
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 304
Sales rank: 1,054,643
File size: 2 MB

About the Author

Leo Damrosch is the Ernest Bernbaum Professor of Literature at Harvard University. He is the author of Jean-Jacques Rousseau: Restless Genius, a finalist for the 2005 National Book Award in Nonfiction and winner of the PEN New England/Winship Award.


Leo Damrosch is the Ernest Bernbaum Professor of Literature at Harvard University. He is the author of several works, including Jean-Jacques Rousseau: Restless Genius, a finalist for the 2005 National Book Award in nonfiction.

Hometown:

Newton, Massachusetts

Date of Birth:

September 14, 1941

Place of Birth:

Manila, Philippines

Education:

B.A., Yale University, 1963; M.A. Cambridge University, 1966; Ph.D., Princeton University, 1968

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