The Battle for the American Mind: A Brief History of a Nation's Thought

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9780742534360: The Battle for the American Mind: A Brief History of a Nation's Thought
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The Battle for the American Mind brings together religion, politics, economics, science, and literature to present a compelling history of the American people. In this brief and entertaining book, noted historian Carl J. Richard argues that there have been three worldviews that have dominated American thought-theism, humanism, and skepticism. Theists put their faith in God, humanists in man, and skeptics have faith in neither god nor man. Each worldview has had an epoch of domination, leading to the present "Age of Confusion" where theists, humanists, and skeptics battle one another for control of American hearts and minds. By clearly explaining what Americans believed, exploring why they did so, and showing how that impacted the nation's development, Carl J. Richard presents a unique portrait of the United States-past and present.

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An ambitious and original book. Instead of 'explaining' America from the perspective of gender, race, class, economics or some other social science, Richard talks about the influence of worldviews on the development of the United States and so casts an interesting light on the development of America from its European origins through the colonial period, the Founding and down to today.--E. Christian Kopff, University of Colorado, Boulder

Succinct, incisive and selective, Carl Richard provides an engaging historical orientation to American intellectual life and its European antecedents.--Daniel Walker Howe, Oxford and UCLA

The author had a good thematic approach.--George Cotkin, California Polytechnic State University "American Historical Review "

Carl J. Richard's The Battle for the American Mind is a provocative, well-written interpretation of American intellectual history 'for general readers' that is designed to further discussion of ideas rather than answer all scholarly questions. . . . The book would be a solid assignment for undergraduates and an informative study for the general reader, Richard's intended audience.--Adam L. Tate, Clayton State University "Journal of Southern History "

This book, with its recognition that historical currents are often circular, would be a welcome addition to public libraries and undergraduate collections.--Library Journal

Synopsis:

"The Battle for the American Mind" brings together religion, politics, economics, science, and literature to present a compelling history of the American people. In this brief and entertaining book, noted historian Carl J. Richard argues that there have been three worldviews that have dominated American thought - theism, humanism, and skepticism. By clearly explaining what Americans believed, exploring why they did so, and showing how that impacted the nation's development, Richard presents a unique portrait of the United States - past and present.

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