"With eloquence, wit, passion, and irony, The American Future traces the history of an idea: that of our national destiny....A book of beautiful writing, peppered with wisecracks, slashed with rapier thrusts." --Philadelphia Inquirer A De Tocqueville for the 21st century, Simon Schama, NBCC Award winning author of Rough Crossings offers an ...
"With eloquence, wit, passion, and irony, The American Future traces the history of an idea: that of our national destiny....A book of beautiful writing, peppered with wisecracks, slashed with rapier thrusts." --Philadelphia Inquirer A De Tocqueville for the 21st century, Simon Schama, NBCC Award winning author of Rough Crossings offers an essential, historical, long view analysis of the American character in The American Future. Shama examines four themes--war, race and faith, immigration, and custodianship of the land--through the prism of the historic 2008 presidential election in a magnificent work that the Wall Street Journal calls a "celebration of American resiliency." Niall Ferguson says, "I hope Obama will have this book on his bedside table."
Publishers Weekly, 2009-02-09 Past performance may not guarantee future returns, but it's the best we have to go on, contends this lively meditation on American history. Looking back from the tumultuous 2008 election campaign, historian Schama (NBCC-award winner for Rough Crossings) ponders four themes in American history as they played out in the lives of historical figures: the tension between militarism and liberty in the careers of Civil War general Montgomery Meigs and his family; the progressive influence of evangelical Protestantism on abolitionist and civil rights crusaders; America's conflicted attitudes toward immigrants as seen through the adventures of 18th-century French emigre J. Hector St. John de Crevecoeur; and Americans' profligate exploitation of the land and water in an elegy for the Cherokee tribe. Schama's wide-ranging narratives wander between contemporary reportage ("For a minute or two after the photo op, George Bush was left to his own devices and came my way") and fluent, richly literate history. He's alive to irony and hypocrisy in the American story-Mexicans of the 1820s, he notes, shuddered at the uncouth Yankee immigrants flooding into Texas-but Schama is optimistic that the nation's perennial openness and complexity can see it through the storm clouds ahead. (June) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
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