Search results for: popular-politics-american-revelo

The American Revolution and the Politics of Liberty

Author : Robert H. Webking
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In recent years historians of the American Revolution have become increasingly convinced that political ideas, rather than material interests, were what ultimately led American colonists to fight for independence from Great Britain. During the years preceding the Revolution, Americans explained their resistance to British rule in principled terms. They understood liberty to be something real, valuable, and seriously threatened by British actions that were not merely impolitic but fundamentally unjust. American statesmen contended that certain basic principles had to rule governments, and they developed careful, complex arguments to persuade others, in the colonies and in Britain, that the British government was violating these principles to an extent that prudent, well-informed citizens could not allow. The American Revolution and the Politics of Liberty is a systematic account of the political thought of the leaders of the American Revolution. In his first six chapters, Robert H. Webking analyzes in turn the ideas of James Otis, Patrick Henry, John Dickinson, Samuel Adams, John Adams, and Thomas Jefferson. Webking examines the political contributions of each of these men and explicates the assumptions and implications of their arguments against the British. He explains their ideas about the goals of American politics, the methods that ought to be used to reach those goals, and the circumstances that would make revolution just and prudent. In the ensuing chapters Webking presents an overview of the political thought behind the American Revolution based on his analysis of these six political leaders. He addresses the average colonial American's level of political sophistication, the American conception of liberty and its importance, and the American perception of the British threat to that liberty.The thinkers that Webking studies are recognized now, as they were in their time, as the major figures in American Revolutionary thought. The principles that they discussed, refined, and implemented continue to serve as the foundation for American government. The American Revolution and the Politics of Liberty offers a complete and sophisticated understanding of the contribution these leaders made to American politics.

A People in Revolution

Author : Edward Countryman
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The Citizenship Revolution

Author : Douglas Bradburn
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Most Americans believe that the ratification of the Constitution in 1788 marked the settlement of post-Revolutionary disputes over the meanings of rights, democracy, and sovereignty in the new nation. In The Citizenship Revolution, Douglas Bradburn undercuts this view by showing that the Union, not the Nation, was the most important product of independence. In 1774, everyone in British North America was a subject of King George and Parliament. In 1776 a number of newly independent "states," composed of "American citizens" began cobbling together a Union to fight their former fellow countrymen. But who was an American? What did it mean to be a "citizen" and not a "subject"? And why did it matter? Bradburn’s stunning reinterpretation requires us to rethink the traditional chronologies and stories of the American Revolutionary experience. He places battles over the meaning of "citizenship" in law and in politics at the center of the narrative. He shows that the new political community ultimately discovered that it was not really a "Nation," but a "Union of States"—and that it was the states that set the boundaries of belonging and the very character of rights, for citizens and everyone else. To those inclined to believe that the ratification of the Constitution assured the importance of national authority and law in the lives of American people, the emphasis on the significance and power of the states as the arbiter of American rights and the character of nationhood may seem strange. But, as Bradburn argues, state control of the ultimate meaning of American citizenship represented the first stable outcome of the crisis of authority, allegiance, and identity that had exploded in the American Revolution—a political settlement delicately reached in the first years of the nineteenth century. So ended the first great phase of the American citizenship revolution: a continuing struggle to reconcile the promise of revolutionary equality with the pressing and sometimes competing demands of law, order, and the pursuit of happiness.

The Expanding Blaze

Author : Jonathan Israel
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Cover -- Title -- Copyright -- Contents -- List of Illustrations -- Introduction: The American Revolution and the Origins of Democratic Modernity -- 1. First Rumblings -- 2. A Republican Revolution -- 3. Revolutionary Constitutionalism and the Federal Union (1776-90) -- 4. Schooling Republicans -- 5. Benjamin Franklin: "American Icon"? -- 6. Black Emancipation: Confronting Slavery in the New Republic -- 7. Expropriating the Native Americans -- 8. Whites Dispossessed -- 9. Canada: An Ideological Conflict -- 10. John Adams's "American Revolution"--11. Jefferson's French Revolution -- 12. A Tragic Case: The Irish Revolution (1775-98) -- 13. America's "Conservative Turn": The Emerging "Party System" in the 1790s -- 14. America and the Haitian Revolution -- 15. Louisiana and the Principles of '76 -- 16. A Revolutionary Era: Napoleon, Spain, and the Americas (1808-15) -- 17. Reaction, Radicalism, and Américanisme under "the Restoration" (1814-30) -- 18. The Greek Revolution (1770-1830) -- 19. The Freedom- Fighters of the 1830s -- 20. The Revolutions of 1848: Democratic Republicanism versus Socialism -- 21. American Reaction (1848-52) -- Conclusion: "Exceptionalism," Populism, and the Radical Enlightenment's Demise -- Notes -- Bibliography -- Index

The Marketplace of Revolution

Author : T. H. Breen
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Citing evidence from museum collections, colonial wills, newspaper advertisements, and archaeological sites, argues that the increasing availability of British consumer goods into the colonies help set off the American Revolution.

Bolivar and the Political Thought of the Spanish American Revolution

Author : Victor Andres Belaunde
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British Foreign Policy in the Age of the American Revolution

Author : Hamish M. Scott
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Examines the nature and role of British diplomacy in the age of the American Revolution, and the reasons why, unlike her other 18th-century conflicts, Britain fought that war without a major European ally.

Tom Paine s America

Author : Seth Cotlar
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Tom Paine’s America explores the vibrant, transatlantic traffic in people, ideas, and texts that profoundly shaped American political debate in the 1790s. In 1789, when the Federal Constitution was ratified, "democracy" was a controversial term that very few Americans used to describe their new political system. That changed when the French Revolution—and the wave of democratic radicalism that it touched off around the Atlantic World—inspired a growing number of Americans to imagine and advocate for a wide range of political and social reforms that they proudly called "democratic." One of the figureheads of this new international movement was Tom Paine, the author of Common Sense. Although Paine spent the 1790s in Europe, his increasingly radical political writings from that decade were wildly popular in America. A cohort of democratic printers, newspaper editors, and booksellers stoked the fires of American politics by importing a flood of information and ideas from revolutionary Europe. Inspired by what they were learning from their contemporaries around the world, the evolving democratic opposition in America pushed their fellow citizens to consider a wide range of radical ideas regarding racial equality, economic justice, cosmopolitan conceptions of citizenship, and the construction of more literally democratic polities. In Europe such ideas quickly fell victim to a counter-Revolutionary backlash that defined Painite democracy as dangerous Jacobinism, and the story was much the same in America’s late 1790s. The Democratic Party that won the national election of 1800 was, ironically, the beneficiary of this backlash; for they were able to position themselves as the advocates of a more moderate, safe vision of democracy that differentiated itself from the supposedly aristocratic Federalists to their right and the dangerously democratic Painite Jacobins to their left. -- -- Rosemarie Zagarri, George Mason University, author of Revolutionary Backlash: Women and Politics in the Early American Republic

The Shoemaker and the Tea Party

Author : Alfred F. Young
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George Robert Twelves Hewes, a Boston shoemaker who participated in such key events of the American Revolution as the Boston Massacre and the Tea Party, might have been lost to history if not for his longevity and the historical mood of the 1830's. When the Tea Party became a leading symbol of the Revolutionary ear fifty years after the actual event, this 'common man' in his nineties was 'discovered' and celebrated in Boston as a national hero. Young pieces together this extraordinary tale, adding new insights about the role that individual and collective memory play in shaping our understanding of history.

Politics Culture and Class in the French Revolution

Author : Lynn Hunt
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A landmark work of French Revolution scholarship, now in its 20th anniversary edition.