A History of the American People

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9780060930349: A History of the American People

Readable and provocative and written with Paul Johnson's customary vigorous, direct and colourful style, A History of the American People charts the sweep and drama of America's history through its politics and economics, its art and literature and science, its society and manners and, not least, its complex religious beliefs. From Walter Raleigh to Bill Clinton, Paul Johnson casts an admiring but not uncritical eye over events and personalities through the past 400 years. 'Written with a wonder and affectionate curiosity that sweep the reader along...This is the kind of book that brings new readers to its subject by its freshness, its enthusiasm and the quality of its writing' Godfrey Hodgson, Independent

* 'A masterly rendition of America's unique and rambunctious past that is vivid, thoughtful and absorbing...The book is a gallery of engaging pen portraits, elegantly wrought in a few strokes...Much of the book is a collection of these colourful patches which the author has artfully sewn together into a giant, vibrant, breathtaking American quilt - Johnson at his entertaining best' Raymond Seitz, Sunday Telegraph

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Book Description:

A magnificent book which reinterprets every aspect of American history

About the Author:

Paul Johnson was born in 1928 and educated at Stonyhurst and Magdalen College, Oxford. He has enjoyed a varied career, which includes army service and international journalism. He has contributed to many of the world's most famous newspapers and magazines and has travelled to all five continents to report events, interview presidents and prime ministers for the press and TV, and to lecture to academic and business audiences.

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Johnson, Paul
Published by Harper Perennial (1999)
ISBN 10: 0060930349 ISBN 13: 9780060930349
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Book Description Harper Perennial, 1999. Book Condition: New. Brand New, Unread Copy in Perfect Condition. A+ Customer Service! Summary: "The creation of the United States of America is the greatest of all human adventures," begins Paul Johnson's remarkable new American history. "No other national story holds such tremendous lessons, for the American people themselves and for the rest of mankind." Johnson's history is a reinterpretation of American history from the first settlements to the Clinton administration. It covers every aspect of U.S. history--politics; business and economics; art, literature and science; society and customs; complex traditions and religious beliefs. The story is told in terms of the men and women who shaped and led the nation and the ordinary people who collectively created its unique character. Wherever possible, letters, diaries, and recorded conversations are used to ensure a sense of actuality. "The book has new and often trenchant things to say about every aspect and period of America's past," says Johnson, "and I do not seek, as some historians do, to conceal my opinions." Johnson's history presents John Winthrop, Roger Williams, Anne Hutchinson, Cotton Mather, Franklin, Tom Paine, Washington, Adams, Jefferson, Hamilton, and Madison from a fresh perspective. It emphasizes the role of religion in American history and how early America was linked to England's history and culture and includes incisive portraits of Andrew Jackson, Chief Justice Marshall, Clay, Lincoln, and Jefferson Davis. Johnson shows how Grover Cleveland and Teddy Roosevelt ushered in the age of big business and industry and how Woodrow Wilson revolutionized the government's role. He offers new views of Harding, Coolidge, and Hoover and of Franklin Roosevelt's New Deal and his role as commander in chief during World War II. An examination of the unforeseen greatness of Harry Truman and reassessments of Eisenhower, Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon, Reagan, and Bush follow. "Compulsively readable," said Foreign Affairs of Johnson's unique narrative skills and sharp profiles of people. This is an in-depth portrait of a great people, from their fragile origins through their struggles for independence and nationhood, their heroic efforts and sacrifices to deal with the 'organic sin' of slavery and the preservation of the Union to its explosive economic growth and emergence as a world power and its sole superpower. Johnson discusses such contemporary topics as the politics of racism, education, Vietnam, the power of the press, political correctness, the growth of litigation, and the rising influence of women. He sees Americans as a problem-solving people and the story of America as "essentially one of difficulties being overcome by intelligence and skill, by faith and strength of purpose, by courage and persistence.Looking back on its past, and forward to its future, the auguries are that it will not disappoint humanity." This challenging narrative and interpretation of American history by the author of many distinguished historical works is sometimes controversial and always provocative. Johnson's views of individuals, events, themes, and issues are original, critical, and admiring, for he is, above all, a strong believer in the history and the destiny of the American people. Bookseller Inventory # ABE_book_new_0060930349

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