Catalogue


Radicalism of the American Revolution /
Gordon S. Wood.
imprint
New York : Vintage Books ; a division of Random House, Inc., 1991.
description
x, 447 p.
ISBN
0679736883 (pbk.) :
format(s)
Book
Holdings
More Details
imprint
New York : Vintage Books ; a division of Random House, Inc., 1991.
isbn
0679736883 (pbk.) :
catalogue key
436747
 
Includes bibliographical references and index.
A Look Inside
Awards
This item was nominated for the following awards:
Pulitzer Prize, USA, 1993 : Won
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Publishers Weekly on 1993-02-22:
The gifted Wood offers a fresh take on the formative years of the United States, explaining the astonishing transformation of disparate, quarreling colonies into a bustling, unruly republic of egalitarian-minded citizens. (Mar.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Appeared in Library Journal on 1992-01:
Historians have always had problems explaining the revolutionary character of the American Revolution: its lack of class conflict, a reign of terror, and indiscriminate violence make it seem positively sedate. In this beautifully written and persuasively argued book, one of the most noted of U.S. historians restores the radicalism to what he terms ``one of the greatest revolutions the world has ever known.'' It was the American Revolution, Wood argues, that unleashed the social forces that transformed American society in the years between 1760 and 1820. The change from a deferential, monarchical, ordered, and static society to a liberal, democratic, and commercial one was astonishing, all the more so because it took place without industrialization, urbanization, or the revolution in transportation. It was a revolution of the mind, in which the concept of equality, democracy, and private interest grasped by hundreds of thousands of Americans transformed a country nearly overnight. Exciting, compelling, and sure to provoke controversy, the book will be discussed for years to come. History Book Club main selection.-- David B. Mattern, Univ. of Virginia, Charlottesville (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Appeared in Choice on 1992-09:
This complements Wood's highly regarded Creation of the American Republic (1969) and extends the argument broached by J. Franklin Jameson in The American Revolution Considered as a Social Movement (1926). Wood (Brown University) refutes a generation or more of scholarship that has labeled the American Revolution "conservative" because, unlike the French and Russian Revolutions, comparatively little blood was shed and the American leaders ended up in charge after the rebellion, rather than losing their heads to the guillotine or assassination. Under the broad categories of monarchy, republicanism, and democracy, Wood explains how the US was transformed from a society that took for granted a nonworking elite and a dependent servile underclass to one in which the free-standing individualist, who worked for a living, became the norm. At the same time, political leadership passed from an aristocracy to common people. Wood concludes with the observation that the founding fathers, who believed a republic would succeed only if controlled by a virtuous people, lived long enough to despair as making money became the modus operandi of American life. In a short review it is impossible to convey the richness and logical argument of this readable book based on hundreds of primary and secondary sources. All levels. E. Cassara; emeritus, George Mason University
Reviews
Review Quotes
"The most important study of the American Revolution to appear in over twenty years...a landmark book." --The New York Times Book Review "A breathtaking social, political, and ideological analysis. This book will set the agenda for discussion for some time to come." --Richard L. Bushman
"The most important study of the American Revolution to appear in over twenty years ... a landmark book." - The New York Times Book Review "A breathtaking social, political, and ideological analysis. This book will set the agenda for discussion for some time to come." -Richard L. Bushman
This item was reviewed in:
Publishers Weekly, February 1993
To find out how to look for other reviews, please see our guides to finding book reviews in the Sciences or Social Sciences and Humanities.
Summaries
Main Description
In a grand and immemsely readable synthesis of historical, political, cultural, and economic analysis, a prize-winning historian depicts much more than a break with England. He gives readers a revolution that transformed an almost feudal society into a democratic one, whose emerging realities sometimes baffled and disappointed its founding fathers.
Table of Contents
Monarchy
Hierarchy
Patricians and Plebeians
Patriarchal Dependence
Patronage
Political Authority
Republicanism
The Republicanization of Monarchy
A Truncated Society
Loosening the Bands of Society
Enlightened Paternalism
Revolution
Enlightenment
Benevolence
Democracy
Equality
Interests
The Assault on Aristocracy
Democratic Officeholding
A World Within Themselves
The Celebration of Commerce
Middle-Class Order
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

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