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First Principles

By Thomas E. Ricks
  • Format : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : HarperCollins
  • Isbn : 9780062997470
  • Pages : 416
  • Category : History
  • Reads : 571
  • File Pdf: first-principles.pdf

Book Summary:

New York Times Bestseller Editors' Choice —New York Times Book Review "Ricks knocks it out of the park with this jewel of a book. On every page I learned something new. Read it every night if you want to restore your faith in our country." —James Mattis, General, U.S. Marines (ret.) & 26th Secretary of Defense The Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and #1 New York Times bestselling author offers a revelatory new book about the founding fathers, examining their educations and, in particular, their devotion to the ancient Greek and Roman classics—and how that influence would shape their ideals and the new American nation. On the morning after the 2016 presidential election, Thomas Ricks awoke with a few questions on his mind: What kind of nation did we now have? Is it what was designed or intended by the nation’s founders? Trying to get as close to the source as he could, Ricks decided to go back and read the philosophy and literature that shaped the founders’ thinking, and the letters they wrote to each other debating these crucial works—among them the Iliad, Plutarch’s Lives, and the works of Xenophon, Epicurus, Aristotle, Cato, and Cicero. For though much attention has been paid the influence of English political philosophers, like John Locke, closer to their own era, the founders were far more immersed in the literature of the ancient world. The first four American presidents came to their classical knowledge differently. Washington absorbed it mainly from the elite culture of his day; Adams from the laws and rhetoric of Rome; Jefferson immersed himself in classical philosophy, especially Epicureanism; and Madison, both a groundbreaking researcher and a deft politician, spent years studying the ancient world like a political scientist. Each of their experiences, and distinctive learning, played an essential role in the formation of the United States. In examining how and what they studied, looking at them in the unusual light of the classical world, Ricks is able to draw arresting and fresh portraits of men we thought we knew. First Principles follows these four members of the Revolutionary generation from their youths to their adult lives, as they grappled with questions of independence, and forming and keeping a new nation. In doing so, Ricks interprets not only the effect of the ancient world on each man, and how that shaped our constitution and government, but offers startling new insights into these legendary leaders.

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  • Format : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Twelve
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  • Category : Biography & Autobiography
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  • File Pdf: first-friends.pdf

Book Summary:

AN INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER! A USA TODAY "BEST BOOKS OF 2021" PICK! In the bestselling tradition of The Presidents Club and Presidential Courage, White House history as told through the stories of the best friends and closest confidants of American presidents. Here are the riveting histories of myriad presidential friendships, among them: Abraham Lincoln and Joshua Speed: They shared a bed for four years during which Speed saved his friend from a crippling depression. Two decades later the friends worked together to save the Union. Harry Truman and Eddie Jacobson: When Truman wavered on whether to recognize the state of Israel in 1948, his lifelong friend and former business partner intervened at just the right moment with just the right words to steer the president’s decision. Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Daisy Suckley: Unassuming and overlooked during her lifetime, Daisy Suckley was in reality FDR’s most trusted, constant confidant, the respite for a lonely and overworked President navigating the Great Depression and World War II John Kennedy and David Ormsby-Gore: They met as young men in pre-war London and began a conversation over the meaning of leadership. A generation later the Cuban Missile Crisis would put their ideas to test as Ormsby-Gore became the president’s unofficial, but most valued foreign policy advisor. These and other friendships—including Thomas Jefferson and James Madison, Franklin Pierce and Nathaniel Hawthorne, and Bill Clinton and Vernon Jordan—populate this fresh and provocative exploration of a series of seminal presidential friendships. Publishing history teems with books by and about Presidents, First Ladies, First Pets, and even First Chefs. Now former Clinton aide Gary Ginsberg breaks new literary ground on Pennsylvania Avenue and provides fresh insights into the lives of the men who held the most powerful political office in the world by looking at the friends on whom they relied. First Friends is an engaging, serendipitous look into the lives of Commanders-in-Chief and how their presidencies were shaped by those they held most dear.

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  • File Pdf: the-last-assassin.pdf

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Book Summary:

"Rothkopf does a brilliant job defining precisely how Trump has been aiding and abetting the enemy... compelling." --Financial Times Political historian and commentator David Rothkopf shows how Trump will be judged by history (Spoiler alert: not well) in Traitor. Donald Trump is unfit in almost every respect for the high office he holds. But what distinguishes him from every other bad leader the U.S. has had is that he has repeatedly, egregiously, betrayed his country. Regardless of how Senate Republicans have let him off the hook, the facts available to the public show that Trump has met every necessary standard to define his behavior as traitorous. He has clearly broken faith with the people of the country he was chosen to lead, starting long before he took office, then throughout his time in the White House. And we may not yet have seen the last of his crimes. But the story we know so far is so outrageous and disturbing that it raises a question that has never before been presented in American history: is the president of the United States the greatest threat this country faces in the world? We also need to understand how the country has historically viewed such crimes and how it has treated them in the past to place what has happened in perspective. After his examination of traitors including Benedict Arnold, Aaron Burr, and leaders of the Confederacy, David Rothkopf concludes that Donald Trump and his many abettors have committed the highest-level, greatest, most damaging betrayal in the history of the country.

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  • Format : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
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  • File Pdf: thomas-jefferson.pdf

Book Summary:

In this unique biography of Thomas Jefferson, leading journalist and social critic Christopher Hitchens offers a startlingly new and provocative interpretation of our Founding Father. Situating Jefferson within the context of America's evolution and tracing his legacy over the past two hundred years, Hitchens brings the character of Jefferson to life as a man of his time and also as a symbolic figure beyond it. Conflicted by power, Jefferson wrote the Declaration of Independence and acted as Minister to France yet yearned for a quieter career in the Virginia legislature. Predicting that slavery would shape the future of America's development, this professed proponent of emancipation elided the issue in the Declaration and continued to own human property. An eloquent writer, he was an awkward public speaker; a reluctant candidate, he left an indelible presidential legacy. Jefferson's statesmanship enabled him to negotiate the Louisiana Purchase with France, doubling the size of the nation, and he authorized the Lewis and Clark expedition, opening up the American frontier for exploration and settlement. Hitchens also analyzes Jefferson's handling of the Barbary War, a lesser-known chapter of his political career, when his attempt to end the kidnapping and bribery of Americans by the Barbary states, and the subsequent war with Tripoli, led to the building of the U.S. navy and the fortification of America's reputation regarding national defense. In the background of this sophisticated analysis is a large historical drama: the fledgling nation's struggle for independence, formed in the crucible of the eighteenth-century Enlightenment, and, in its shadow, the deformation of that struggle in the excesses of the French Revolution. This artful portrait of a formative figure and a turbulent era poses a challenge to anyone interested in American history -- or in the ambiguities of human nature.

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  • Pages : 272
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  • File Pdf: the-middle-way.pdf

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A portrait of the effectiveness of moderation in US foreign policy, as illustrated by three of America's most consequential and widely-admired postwar presidents: Dwight Eisenhower, George H.W. Bush, and Barack Obama. When thinking about Americaâs role in the world, Dwight Eisenhower, George H. W. Bush, and Barack Obama may not seem to have a lot in common. But they do. While divided by background, generation, and political party, they exemplify a distinct and underappreciated tradition of American leadership: The Middle Way. As the scholar and former senior foreign policy official Derek Chollet shows in this deeply researched book, these three presidents took a centrist -- and effective -- approach to foreign policy. With so many challenges facing the United States, Chollet makes the case for why the nation must reclaim this brand of leadership, learn from it, and champion it. This timely book blends history, politics and biography to reveal how these presidents viewed the world and approached the task of leadership. By providing behind-the-scenes accounts and incisive analysis of the foreign policies of Ike, Bush 41, and Obama, The Middle Way offers a fresh way of thinking about American power. It shows how these three leaders defined a foreign policy archetype too often obscured by partisan blinders and historical amnesia. With vivid story-telling and astute insights, Chollet makes a compelling argument for how we should remember the past, think about the present, and approach the policy challenges of tomorrow. Eisenhower, Bush, and Obama demonstrated how the United States can exercise prudent and powerful authority in the world, and they stand as exemplars of decency, humility, optimism, confidence, and pragmatism. Together, they set the bar for the kind of global leadership needed today -- and The Middle Way reminds both Americans and the world that this proud legacy not only persists, but is needed more than ever.

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  • File Pdf: the-bomber-mafia.pdf

Book Summary:

A “truly compelling” (Good Morning America) New York Times bestseller that explores how technology and best intentions collide in the heat of war—from the creator and host of the podcast Revisionist History. In The Bomber Mafia, Malcolm Gladwell weaves together the stories of a Dutch genius and his homemade computer, a band of brothers in central Alabama, a British psychopath, and pyromaniacal chemists at Harvard to examine one of the greatest moral challenges in modern American history. Most military thinkers in the years leading up to World War II saw the airplane as an afterthought. But a small band of idealistic strategists, the “Bomber Mafia,” asked: What if precision bombing could cripple the enemy and make war far less lethal? In contrast, the bombing of Tokyo on the deadliest night of the war was the brainchild of General Curtis LeMay, whose brutal pragmatism and scorched-earth tactics in Japan cost thousands of civilian lives, but may have spared even more by averting a planned US invasion. In The Bomber Mafia, Gladwell asks, “Was it worth it?” Things might have gone differently had LeMay’s predecessor, General Haywood Hansell, remained in charge. Hansell believed in precision bombing, but when he and Curtis LeMay squared off for a leadership handover in the jungles of Guam, LeMay emerged victorious, leading to the darkest night of World War II. The Bomber Mafia is a riveting tale of persistence, innovation, and the incalculable wages of war.

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  • File Pdf: the-founders-and-the-classics.pdf

Book Summary:

Is our Greek and Roman heritage merely allusive and illusory? Or were our founders, and so our republican beginnings, truly steeped in the stuff of antiquity? So far largely a matter of generalization and speculation, the influence of Greek and Roman authors on our American forefathers finally becomes clear in this fascinating book-the first comprehensive study of the founders’ classical reading. Carl J. Richard begins by examining how eighteenth-century social institutions in general and the educational system in particular conditioned the founders to venerate the classics. He then explores the founders’ various uses of classical symbolism, models, “antimodels,” mixed government theory, pastoralism, and philosophy, revealing in detail the formative influence exerted by the classics, both directly and through the mediation of Whig and American perspectives. In this analysis, we see how the classics not only supplied the principal basis for the U.S. Constitution but also contributed to the founders’ conception of human nature, their understanding of virtue, and their sense of identity and purpose within a grand universal scheme. At the same time, we learn how the classics inspired obsessive fear of conspiracies against liberty, which poisoned relations between Federalists and Republicans. The shrewd ancients who molded Western civilization still have much to teach us, Richard suggests. His account of the critical role they played in shaping our nation and our lives provides a valuable lesson in the transcendent power of the classics.

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  • Format : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
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  • File Pdf: the-ideas-that-made-america.pdf

Book Summary:

Long before the United States was a nation, it was a set of ideas, projected onto the New World by European explorers with centuries of belief and thought in tow. From this foundation of expectation and experience, America and American thought grew in turn, enriched by the bounties of the Enlightenment, the philosophies of liberty and individuality, the tenets of religion, and the doctrines of republicanism and democracy. Crucial to this development were the thinkers who nurtured it, from Thomas Jefferson to Ralph Waldo Emerson, W.E.B. DuBois to Jane Addams, and Betty Friedan to Richard Rorty. The Ideas That Made America: A Brief History traces how Americans have addressed the issues and events of their time and place, whether the Civil War, the Great Depression, or the culture wars of today. Spanning a variety of disciplines, from religion, philosophy, and political thought, to cultural criticism, social theory, and the arts, Jennifer Ratner-Rosenhagen shows how ideas have been major forces in American history, driving movements such as transcendentalism, Social Darwinism, conservatism, and postmodernism. In engaging and accessible prose, this introduction to American thought considers how notions about freedom and belonging, the market and morality -- and even truth -- have commanded generations of Americans and been the cause of fierce debate.

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  • File Pdf: how-democracies-die.pdf

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NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • “Comprehensive, enlightening, and terrifyingly timely.”—The New York Times Book Review (Editors' Choice) WINNER OF THE GOLDSMITH BOOK PRIZE • SHORTLISTED FOR THE LIONEL GELBER PRIZE • NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY The Washington Post • Time • Foreign Affairs • WBUR • Paste Donald Trump’s presidency has raised a question that many of us never thought we’d be asking: Is our democracy in danger? Harvard professors Steven Levitsky and Daniel Ziblatt have spent more than twenty years studying the breakdown of democracies in Europe and Latin America, and they believe the answer is yes. Democracy no longer ends with a bang—in a revolution or military coup—but with a whimper: the slow, steady weakening of critical institutions, such as the judiciary and the press, and the gradual erosion of long-standing political norms. The good news is that there are several exit ramps on the road to authoritarianism. The bad news is that, by electing Trump, we have already passed the first one. Drawing on decades of research and a wide range of historical and global examples, from 1930s Europe to contemporary Hungary, Turkey, and Venezuela, to the American South during Jim Crow, Levitsky and Ziblatt show how democracies die—and how ours can be saved. Praise for How Democracies Die “What we desperately need is a sober, dispassionate look at the current state of affairs. Steven Levitsky and Daniel Ziblatt, two of the most respected scholars in the field of democracy studies, offer just that.”—The Washington Post “Where Levitsky and Ziblatt make their mark is in weaving together political science and historical analysis of both domestic and international democratic crises; in doing so, they expand the conversation beyond Trump and before him, to other countries and to the deep structure of American democracy and politics.”—Ezra Klein, Vox “If you only read one book for the rest of the year, read How Democracies Die. . . .This is not a book for just Democrats or Republicans. It is a book for all Americans. It is nonpartisan. It is fact based. It is deeply rooted in history. . . . The best commentary on our politics, no contest.”—Michael Morrell, former Acting Director of the Central Intelligence Agency (via Twitter) “A smart and deeply informed book about the ways in which democracy is being undermined in dozens of countries around the world, and in ways that are perfectly legal.”—Fareed Zakaria, CNN

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  • Publisher : Yale University Press
  • Isbn : 9780300164107
  • Pages : 288
  • Category : Religion
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  • File Pdf: from-jesus-to-christ.pdf

Book Summary:

"Magisterial. . . . A learned, brilliant and enjoyable study."—Géza Vermès, Times Literary Supplement In this exciting book, Paula Fredriksen explains the variety of New Testament images of Jesus by exploring the ways that the new Christian communities interpreted his mission and message in light of the delay of the Kingdom he had preached. This edition includes an introduction reviews the most recent scholarship on Jesus and its implications for both history and theology. "Brilliant and lucidly written, full of original and fascinating insights."—Reginald H. Fuller, Journal of the American Academy of Religion "This is a first-rate work of a first-rate historian."—James D. Tabor, Journal of Religion "Fredriksen confronts her documents—principally the writings of the New Testament—as an archaeologist would an especially rich complex site. With great care she distinguishes the literary images from historical fact. As she does so, she explains the images of Jesus in terms of the strategies and purposes of the writers Paul, Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John."—Thomas D’Evelyn, Christian Science Monitor

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  • Format : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Routledge
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  • Pages : 224
  • Category : History
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  • File Pdf: the-barbarian-s-beverage.pdf

Book Summary:

Comprehensive and detailed, this is the first ever study of ancient beer and its distilling, consumption and characteristics Examining evidence from Greek and Latin authors from 700 BC to AD 900, the book demonstrates the important technological as well as ideological contributions the Europeans made to beer throughout the ages. The study is supported by textual and archaeological evidence and gives a fresh and fascinating insight into an aspect of ancient life that has fed through to modern society and which stands today as one of the world’s most popular beverages. Students of ancient history, classical studies and the history of food and drink will find this an useful and enjoyable read.

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  • Isbn : 9780465093823
  • Pages : 352
  • Category : History
  • Reads : 829
  • File Pdf: mortal-republic.pdf

Book Summary:

Learn why the Roman Republic collapsed -- and how it could have continued to thrive -- with this insightful history from an award-winning author. In Mortal Republic, prize-winning historian Edward J. Watts offers a new history of the fall of the Roman Republic that explains why Rome exchanged freedom for autocracy. For centuries, even as Rome grew into the Mediterranean's premier military and political power, its governing institutions, parliamentary rules, and political customs successfully fostered negotiation and compromise. By the 130s BC, however, Rome's leaders increasingly used these same tools to cynically pursue individual gain and obstruct their opponents. As the center decayed and dysfunction grew, arguments between politicians gave way to political violence in the streets. The stage was set for destructive civil wars -- and ultimately the imperial reign of Augustus. The death of Rome's Republic was not inevitable. In Mortal Republic, Watts shows it died because it was allowed to, from thousands of small wounds inflicted by Romans who assumed that it would last forever.

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  • Format : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Yale University Press
  • Isbn : 9780300252088
  • Pages : 352
  • Category : History
  • Reads : 494
  • File Pdf: the-polymath.pdf

Book Summary:

The first history of the western polymath, from the fifteenth century to the present day From Leonardo Da Vinci to John Dee and Comenius, from George Eliot to Oliver Sacks and Susan Sontag, polymaths have moved the frontiers of knowledge in countless ways. But history can be unkind to scholars with such encyclopaedic interests. All too often these individuals are remembered for just one part of their valuable achievements. In this engaging, erudite account, renowned cultural historian Peter Burke argues for a more rounded view. Identifying 500 western polymaths, Burke explores their wide-ranging successes and shows how their rise matched a rapid growth of knowledge in the age of the invention of printing, the discovery of the New World and the Scientific Revolution. It is only more recently that the further acceleration of knowledge has led to increased specialisation and to an environment that is less supportive of wide-ranging scholars and scientists. Spanning the Renaissance to the present day, Burke changes our understanding of this remarkable intellectual species.

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  • Category : History
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  • File Pdf: the-gamble.pdf

Book Summary:

Fiasco, Thomas E. Ricks’s #1 New York Times bestseller, transformed the political dialogue on the war in Iraq—The Gamble is the next news breaking installment Thomas E. Ricks uses hundreds of hours of exclusive interviews with top officers in Iraq and extraordinary on-the-ground reportage to document the inside story of the Iraq War since late 2005 as only he can, examining the events that took place as the military was forced to reckon with itself, the surge was launched, and a very different war began. Since early 2007 a new military order has directed American strategy. Some top U.S. officials now in Iraq actually opposed the 2003 invasion, and almost all are severely critical of how the war was fought from then through 2006. At the core of the story is General David Petraeus, a military intellectual who has gathered around him an unprecedented number of officers with both combat experience and Ph.D.s. Underscoring his new and unorthodox approach, three of his key advisers are quirky foreigners—an Australian infantryman-turned- anthropologist, an antimilitary British woman who is an expert in the Middle East, and a Mennonite-educated Palestinian pacifist. The Gamble offers news-breaking account, revealing behind-the-scenes disagreements between top commanders. We learn that almost every single officer in the chain of command fought the surge. Many of Petraeus’s closest advisers went to Iraq extremely pessimistic, doubting that the surge would have any effect, and his own boss was so skeptical that he dispatched an admiral to Baghdad in the summer of 2007 to come up with a strategy to replace Petraeus’s. That same boss later flew to Iraq to try to talk Petraeus out of his planned congressional testimony. The Gamble examines the congressional hearings through the eyes of Petraeus and Ambassador Ryan Crocker, and their views of the questions posed by the 2008 presidential candidates. For Petraeus, prevailing in Iraq means extending the war. Thomas E. Ricks concludes that the war is likely to last another five to ten years—and that that outcome is a best case scenario. His stunning conclusion, stated in the last line of the book, is that “the events for which the Iraq war will be remembered by us and by the world have not yet happened.”

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By Pauline Shanks Kaurin
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  • Pages : 288
  • Category : Political Science
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  • File Pdf: on-obedience.pdf

Book Summary:

This volume is designed to be an in-depth and nuanced philosophical treatment of the virtue of obedience in the context of the professional military and the broader civilian political community, including the general citizenry. The nature and components of obedience are critical factors leading to further discussions of the moral obligations related to obedience, as well as the related practical issues and implications. Pauline Shanks Kaurin seeks to address the following questions: What is obedience? Is it a virtue, and if it is, why? What are the moral grounds of obedience? Why ought military members and citizens be obedient? Are there times that one ought not be obedient? Why? How should we think about obedience in contemporary political communities? In answering these questions, the book draws on arguments and materials from a variety of disciplines including classical studies, philosophy, history, international relations, literature and military studies, with a particular focus on cases and examples to illustrate the conceptual points. While a major focus of the book is the question of obedience in the contemporary military context, many similar (although not exactly the same) issues and considerations apply to other political communities and in, particular, citizens in a nation-state.

Rome's Last Citizen

By Rob Goodman,Jimmy Soni
  • Format : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Macmillan
  • Isbn : 9781250013583
  • Pages : 384
  • Category : Biography & Autobiography
  • Reads : 550
  • File Pdf: rome-s-last-citizen.pdf

Book Summary:

"Cato, history's most famous foe of authoritarian power, was the pivotal political man of Rome; an inspiration to our Founding Fathers; and a cautionary figure for our times. He loved Roman republicanism, but saw himself as too principled for the mere politics that might have saved it. His life and lessons are urgently relevant in the harshly divided America—and world—of today. With erudition and verve, Rob Goodman and Jimmy Soni turn their life of Cato into the most modern of biographies, a blend of The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire and Game Change."—Howard Fineman, Editorial Director of The Huffington Post Media Group, NBC and MSNBC News Analyst, and New York Times bestselling author of The Thirteen American Arguments "A truly outstanding piece of work. What most impresses me is the book's ability to reach through the confusing dynastic politics of the late Roman Republic to present social realities in a way intelligible to the modern reader. Rome's Last Citizen entertainingly restores to life the stoic Roman who inspired George Washington, Patrick Henry and Nathan Hale. This is more than a biography: it is a study of how a reputation lasted through the centuries from the end of one republic to the start of another."—David Frum, DailyBeast columnist, former White House speech writer, and New York Times bestselling author of The Right Man Marcus Porcius Cato: aristocrat who walked barefoot and slept on the ground with his troops, political heavyweight who cultivated the image of a Stoic philosopher, a hardnosed defender of tradition who presented himself as a man out of the sacred Roman past—and the last man standing when Rome's Republic fell to tyranny. His blood feud with Caesar began in the chamber of the Senate, played out on the battlefields of a world war, and ended when he took his own life rather than live under a dictator. Centuries of thinkers, writers, and artists have drawn inspiration from Cato's Stoic courage. Saint Augustine and the early Christians were moved and challenged by his example. Dante, in his Divine Comedy, chose Cato to preside over the souls who arrive in Purgatory. George Washington so revered him that he staged a play on Cato's life to revive the spirit of his troops at Valley Forge. Now, in Rome's Last Citizen, Rob Goodman and Jimmy Soni deliver the first modern biography of this stirring figure. Cato's life is a gripping tale that resonates deeply with our own turbulent times. He grappled with terrorists, a debt crisis, endemic political corruption, and a huge gulf between the elites and those they governed. In many ways, Cato was the ultimate man of principle—he even chose suicide rather than be used by Caesar as a political pawn. But Cato was also a political failure: his stubbornness sealed his and Rome's defeat, and his lonely end casts a shadow on the recurring hope that a singular leader can transcend the dirty business of politics. Rome's Last Citizen is a timeless story of an uncompromising man in a time of crisis and his lifelong battle to save the Republic.

The Generals

By Thomas E. Ricks
  • Format : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Penguin
  • Isbn : 9781101595930
  • Pages : 576
  • Category : History
  • Reads : 379
  • File Pdf: the-generals.pdf

Book Summary:

A New York Times bestseller! An epic history of the decline of American military leadership—from the bestselling author of Fiasco and Churchill and Orwell. While history has been kind to the American generals of World War II—Marshall, Eisenhower, Patton, and Bradley—it has been less kind to the generals of the wars that followed, such as Koster, Franks, Sanchez, and Petraeus. In The Generals, Thomas E. Ricks sets out to explain why that is. In chronicling the widening gulf between performance and accountability among the top brass of the U.S. military, Ricks tells the stories of great leaders and suspect ones, generals who rose to the occasion and generals who failed themselves and their soldiers. In Ricks’s hands, this story resounds with larger meaning: about the transmission of values, about strategic thinking, and about the difference between an organization that learns and one that fails.

The Presidents

By Iain Dale
  • Format : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Hodder & Stoughton
  • Isbn : 9781529379549
  • Pages : 576
  • Category : Biography & Autobiography
  • Reads : 557
  • File Pdf: the-presidents.pdf

Book Summary:

Politics Home: Parliamentarians' Top Books for Christmas 2021 'A must read for political geeks' - Saqib Bhatti There was a huge upsurge of global interest in US politics during the Trump presidency, culminating in the November 2020 election, the victory of the Democrat candidate Joe Biden and the subsequent, horrifying response in the storming of the US capitol. American politics is likely to remain deeply divided during the coming years, and also the focus of global attention - with Trump mobilising his base for 2024. But the transatlantic fascination with the role and office of the US President isn't new at all, and in fact reaches all the way back to the birth of the United States itself. The Presidents features essays, written by a range of academics, historians, political journalists and serving politicians, on all 46 American Presidents who have held the office over the last 230 years - from George Washington to Joe Biden. Each contributor has been carefully chosen based on expert knowledge of their subjects and personal connections, providing analysis of their subject's successes, failures and influence. Any hagiographical writing is shunned in favour of a 'warts and all' perspective on each President and the impact they've had on US politics - past, present and future.

The Education of John Adams

By R. B. Bernstein
  • Format : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Oxford University Press
  • Isbn : 9780197502716
  • Pages : 256
  • Category : Biography & Autobiography
  • Reads : 657
  • File Pdf: the-education-of-john-adams.pdf

Book Summary:

The Education of John Adams is the first biography of John Adams by a biographer with legal training. It examines his origins in colonial Massachusetts, his education, and his struggle to choose a career and define a place for himself in colonial society. It explores the flowering of his legal career and the impact that law had on him and his understanding of himself; his growing involvement with the American Revolution as polemicist, as lawyer, as congressional delegate, and as diplomat; and his commitment to defining and expounding ideas about constitutionalism and how it should work as the body of ideas shaping the new United States. The book traces his part in launching the government of the United States under the U.S. Constitution; his service as the nation's first vice president and second president; and his retirement years, during which he was first a vexed and rejected ex-president and then became the revered Sage of Braintree. It describes the relationships that sustained him - with his wife, the brilliant and eloquent Abigail Adams; with his children; with such allies and supporters as Benjamin Rush and John Marshall; with such sometime friends and sometime adversaries as Benjamin Franklin, George Washington, and Thomas Jefferson; and with such foes as Alexander Hamilton and Timothy Pickering. Bernstein establishes Adams as a key figure in the evolution of American constitutional theory and practice. This is the first biography to examine Adams's conflicted and hesitant ideas about slavery and race in the American context, raising serious questions about his mythic status as a friend of human equality and a foe of slavery. This book's foundation is the record left by Adams himself-- in diaries, letters, essays, pamphlets, and books. The Education of John Adams concludes by re-examining the often-debated question of the relevance of Adams's thought to our own time.

Winning Independence

By John Ferling
  • Format : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Bloomsbury Publishing USA
  • Isbn : 9781635572773
  • Pages : 736
  • Category : History
  • Reads : 439
  • File Pdf: winning-independence.pdf

Book Summary:

From celebrated historian John Ferling, the underexplored history of the second half of the Revolutionary War, when, after years of fighting, American independence often seemed beyond reach. It was 1778, and the recent American victory at Saratoga had netted the U.S a powerful ally in France. Many, including General George Washington, presumed France's entrance into the war meant independence was just around the corner. Meanwhile, having lost an entire army at Saratoga, Great Britain pivoted to a “southern strategy.” The army would henceforth seek to regain its southern colonies, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia, a highly profitable segment of its pre-war American empire. Deep into 1780 Britain's new approach seemed headed for success as the U.S. economy collapsed and morale on the home front waned. By early 1781, Washington, and others, feared that France would drop out of the war if the Allies failed to score a decisive victory that year. Sir Henry Clinton, commander of Britain's army, thought “the rebellion is near its end.” Washington, who had been so optimistic in 1778, despaired: “I have almost ceased to hope.” Winning Independence is the dramatic story of how and why Great Britain-so close to regaining several southern colonies and rendering the postwar United States a fatally weak nation ultimately failed to win the war. The book explores the choices and decisions made by Clinton and Washington, and others, that ultimately led the French and American allies to clinch the pivotal victory at Yorktown that at long last secured American independence.

Vietnam Báo Chí

By Marc Phillip Yablonka
  • Format : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Casemate Publishers
  • Isbn : 9781612006888
  • Pages : 320
  • Category : Biography & Autobiography
  • Reads : 512
  • File Pdf: vietnam-báo-chí.pdf

Book Summary:

A military journalist shines a light on the unsung heroism and contributions of enlisted combat reporters in the Vietnam War in these revealing interviews. Vietnam Bao Chi brings together interviews with thirty-five combat correspondents who reported on the Vietnam War. These brave men and women wrote the stories, captured the images, and filmed the television coverage of their fellow servicepeople on battlefields from the Mekong Delta to the DMZ and from the Tet Offensive in 1968 to the fall of Saigon in 1975. Here you will meet Marine Dale Dye, who would go on to play an integral role in the making of the film Platoon; Green Beret Jim Morris, whose books, including War Story, recount the combat operations of Special Forces units in the Central Highlands; John Del Vecchio, whose classic work of fiction, The 13th Valley, mirrors his own existence as a combat correspondent with the 101st Airborne Division; and US Navy Frogman Chip Maury, renowned for his free-fall and underwater photography in Vietnam. Yablonka’s extensive experience as a military journalist brought him into contact with many of these combat correspondents, giving him a unique insight into their professions and lives. This book honors these brave chroniclers in uniform who brought the Vietnam War home to us. “[This] valuable collection of profiles . . . shines light on the all-but-forgotten role of American military báo chí (press in Vietnamese)." —Publishers Weekly

The Nazi Menace

By Benjamin Carter Hett
  • Format : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Henry Holt and Company
  • Isbn : 9781250205247
  • Pages : 336
  • Category : History
  • Reads : 848
  • File Pdf: the-nazi-menace.pdf

Book Summary:

A panoramic narrative of the years leading up to the Second World War—a tale of democratic crisis, racial conflict, and a belated recognition of evil, with profound resonance for our own time. Berlin, November 1937. Adolf Hitler meets with his military commanders to impress upon them the urgent necessity for a war of aggression in eastern Europe. Some generals are unnerved by the Führer’s grandiose plan, but these dissenters are silenced one by one, setting in motion events that will culminate in the most calamitous war in history. Benjamin Carter Hett takes us behind the scenes in Berlin, London, Moscow, and Washington, revealing the unsettled politics within each country in the wake of the German dictator’s growing provocations. He reveals the fitful path by which anti-Nazi forces inside and outside Germany came to understand Hitler’s true menace to European civilization and learned to oppose him, painting a sweeping portrait of governments under siege, as larger-than-life figures struggled to turn events to their advantage. As in The Death of Democracy, his acclaimed history of the fall of the Weimar Republic, Hett draws on original sources and newly released documents to show how these long-ago conflicts have unexpected resonances in our own time. To read The Nazi Menace is to see past and present in a new and unnerving light.

Atomic Doctors

By James L. Nolan
  • Format : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Harvard University Press
  • Isbn : 9780674249424
  • Pages : 304
  • Category : History
  • Reads : 659
  • File Pdf: atomic-doctors.pdf

Book Summary:

An unflinching examination of the moral and professional dilemmas faced by physicians who took part in the Manhattan Project. After his father died, James L. Nolan, Jr., took possession of a box of private family materials. To his surprise, the small secret archive contained a treasure trove of information about his grandfather’s role as a doctor in the Manhattan Project. Dr. Nolan, it turned out, had been a significant figure. A talented ob-gyn radiologist, he cared for the scientists on the project, organized safety and evacuation plans for the Trinity test at Alamogordo, escorted the “Little Boy” bomb from Los Alamos to the Pacific Islands, and was one of the first Americans to enter the irradiated ruins of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Participation on the project challenged Dr. Nolan’s instincts as a healer. He and his medical colleagues were often conflicted, torn between their duty and desire to win the war and their oaths to protect life. Atomic Doctors follows these physicians as they sought to maximize the health and safety of those exposed to nuclear radiation, all the while serving leaders determined to minimize delays and maintain secrecy. Called upon both to guard against the harmful effects of radiation and to downplay its hazards, doctors struggled with the ethics of ending the deadliest of all wars using the most lethal of all weapons. Their work became a very human drama of ideals, co-optation, and complicity. A vital and vivid account of a largely unknown chapter in atomic history, Atomic Doctors is a profound meditation on the moral dilemmas that ordinary people face in extraordinary times.

The Virginia Dynasty

By Lynne Cheney
  • Format : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Penguin
  • Isbn : 9781101980064
  • Pages : 448
  • Category : History
  • Reads : 231
  • File Pdf: the-virginia-dynasty.pdf

Book Summary:

A vivid account of leadership focusing on the first four Virginia presidents--George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, and James Monroe--from the bestselling historian and author of James Madison. From a small expanse of land on the North American continent came four of the nation's first five presidents--a geographic dynasty whose members led a revolution, created a nation, and ultimately changed the world. George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, and James Monroe were born, grew to manhood, and made their homes within a sixty-mile circle east of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Friends and rivals, they led in securing independence, hammering out the United States Constitution, and building a working republic. Acting together, they doubled the territory of the United States. From their disputes came American political parties and the weaponizing of newspapers, the media of the day. In this elegantly conceived and insightful new book from bestselling author Lynne Cheney, the four Virginians are not marble icons but vital figures deeply intent on building a nation where citizens could be free. Focusing on the intersecting roles these men played as warriors, intellectuals, and statesmen, Cheney takes us back to an exhilarating time when the Enlightenment opened new vistas for humankind. But even as the Virginians advanced liberty, equality, and human possibility, they held people in slavery and were slaveholders when they died. Lives built on slavery were incompatible with a free and just society; their actions contradicted the very ideals they espoused. They managed nonetheless to pass down those ideals, and they became powerful weapons for ending slavery. They inspired Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass and today undergird the freest nation on earth. Taking full measure of strengths and failures in the personal as well as the political lives of the men at the center of this book, Cheney offers a concise and original exploration of how the United States came to be.

Geniuses at War

By David A. Price
  • Format : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Knopf
  • Isbn : 9780525521556
  • Pages : 256
  • Category : History
  • Reads : 412
  • File Pdf: geniuses-at-war.pdf

Book Summary:

The dramatic, untold story of the brilliant team whose feats of innovation and engineering created the world’s first digital electronic computer—decrypting the Nazis’ toughest code, helping bring an end to WWII, and ushering in the information age. Planning the invasion of Normandy, the Allies knew that decoding the communications of the Nazi high command was imperative for its success. But standing in their way was an encryption machine they called Tunny (British English for “tuna”), which was vastly more difficult to crack than the infamous Enigma cipher. To surmount this seemingly impossible challenge, Alan Turing, the Enigma codebreaker, brought in a maverick English working-class engineer named Tommy Flowers who devised the ingenious, daring, and controversial plan to build a machine that would calculate at breathtaking speed and break the code in nearly real time. Together with the pioneering mathematician Max Newman, Flowers and his team produced—against the odds, the clock, and a resistant leadership—Colossus, the world’s first digital electronic computer, the machine that would help bring the war to an end. Drawing upon recently declassified sources, David A. Price’s Geniuses at War tells, for the first time, the full mesmerizing story of the great minds behind Colossus and chronicles the remarkable feats of engineering genius that marked the dawn of the digital age.

Hollowed Out

By Jeremy S. Adams
  • Format : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Simon and Schuster
  • Isbn : 9781684512133
  • Pages : 256
  • Category : Political Science
  • Reads : 415
  • File Pdf: hollowed-out.pdf

Book Summary:

Do teachers have a front row seat to America’s decline? Jeremy S. Adams, a teacher at both the high school and college levels, thinks so. Adams has spent decades trying to instill wisdom, ambition, and a love of learning in his students. And yet, as he notes, when teachers get together, they often share an arresting conclusion: Something has gone terribly wrong. Something essential is missing in our young people. Their curiosity seems stunted, their reason undeveloped, their values uninformed, their knowledge lacking, and most worrying of all, their humanity diminished. Digital hermits of a sort unfamiliar to an older generation, they have little interest in marriage and family. They largely dismiss—and are shockingly ignorant of—religion. They sneer at patriotism, sympathize with riots and vandalism, and regard American society and civilization as so radically flawed that it must be dismantled. Often friendless and depressed, they eat alone, study alone, and even “socialize” alone. Educators like Adams see a generation slipping away. The problems that have hollowed out our young people have been festering for years. A year of COVID-19 lockdowns and social distancing have magnified them. The result could be a generation—and our nation’s future—lost in a miasma of alienation and stupefaction. In his stunning new book, Hollowed Out, Jeremy S. Adams reveals why students have rejected the wisdom, culture, and institutions of Western civilization—and what we can do to win them back. Poignant, frightening, and yet inspiring, this is a book for every parent, teacher, and patriot concerned for our young people and our country

Parallel Lives

By Karl Baughman,Brook Poston
  • Format : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Routledge
  • Isbn : 9781000591118
  • Pages : 208
  • Category : History
  • Reads : 617
  • File Pdf: parallel-lives.pdf

Book Summary:

This book compares selected Romans of the late Republic with American Founders in the style of Plutarch, encouraging readers to rethink how we view heroes and villains and their conceptions of republicanism. Through entertaining yet informative short comparisons, this volume demonstrates the humanity of heroes and villains from different times and places through their often idiosyncratic similarities and differences. Readers gain not only a fuller understanding of the late Roman and early American Republics and their leaders but also an appreciation for comparative biography in its ability to make connections across the human experience. The book provides a way to connect two different areas of study, focusing on how republicanism shaped both Romans and American Founders and providing a previously unexplored contribution to a growing trend of broadening historical exposure. In doing so, Baughman and Poston demonstrate the continued need for connecting different fields of history while also helping students understand their connection to the ancient past. This book is suitable for students and scholars interested in the late Roman and the early American Republics and also appeals to readers of varied interests across historical times and places, particularly those studying the connections between the classical past and modern world.

America the Great and Its Self-Destruction

By Wei Bin Zhang
  • Format : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Algora Publishing
  • Isbn : 9781628944785
  • Pages : 272
  • Category : History
  • Reads : 857
  • File Pdf: america-the-great-and-its-self-destruction.pdf

Book Summary:

The accelerating self-destruction of the United States cannot be hidden when the loss of productivity, loss of faith in government, enflamed identity politics and social fragmentation are constant and are clearly documented. Any national assessment should be grounded in facts, and Prof. Zhang provides a plethora of economic data as a baseline for discussion. The figures and graphs reveal many sides of America that we may generally miss. In addition, Chinese and other Asians familiar with ancient Confucianism have their own sources of wisdom and commentary to guide them in assessing how they and their neighbors think and behave. Here, a Chinese academic familiar with both worlds shares his impressions and his conclusions. Prof. Zhang juxtaposes the political, economic and cultural behavior of America with sparkling quotes from Confucius, Mencius, Xun Zi, as well as Western classical thinkers from Plato to Quesnay and Weber. The book gives us a new perspective on our country — with insights as well from Chaos Theory. In this book we explore how the basic concepts of the yin-yang vision, and socioeconomic chaos theory, can help us understand American civilization, what it represents, and the natural cycles it is going through. Confucianism is more rationalist and sober, in the sense of the absence and the rejection of all non-utilitarian yardsticks, than any other ethical system, with the possible exception of J. Bentham’s. The author presents data on American economic and social trends, and systematically compares the basic ideas of Confucius and Adam Smith. These are interwoven with hundreds of pithy observations on America from a wide spectrum of commentators, from intellectual lumaries to Hollywood stars. The aim of studying the history of human societies, the author says, is to find the equations, i.e., mechanisms, of historical evolution; by stepping back to view events from different perspectives he seeks to present America as an organic whole, going beyond a partial, one-sided view of history — neither the patrician perspective nor that of the workers and the poor. The book is basically an application of the author’s general theory on socioeconomic evolution to provide some insights into America’s evolution by viewing it under an alternative ethical system (ancient Confucianism), with insights from chaos theory.

Degenerations of Democracy

By Craig Calhoun,Dilip Parameshwar Gaonkar,Charles Taylor
  • Format : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Harvard University Press
  • Isbn : 9780674276017
  • Pages : 320
  • Category : Political Science
  • Reads : 664
  • File Pdf: degenerations-of-democracy.pdf

Book Summary:

Three leading thinkers analyze the erosion of democracy’s social foundations and call for a movement to reduce inequality, strengthen inclusive solidarity, empower citizens, and reclaim pursuit of the public good. Democracy is in trouble. Populism is a common scapegoat but not the root cause. More basic are social and economic transformations eroding the foundations of democracy, ruling elites trying to lock in their own privilege, and cultural perversions like making individualistic freedom the enemy of democracy’s other crucial ideals of equality and solidarity. In Degenerations of Democracy three of our most prominent intellectuals investigate democracy gone awry, locate our points of fracture, and suggest paths to democratic renewal. In Charles Taylor’s phrase, democracy is a process, not an end state. Taylor documents creeping disempowerment of citizens, failures of inclusion, and widespread efforts to suppress democratic participation, and he calls for renewing community. Craig Calhoun explores the impact of disruption, inequality, and transformation in democracy’s social foundations. He reminds us that democracies depend on republican constitutions as well as popular will, and that solidarity and voice must be achieved at large scales as well as locally. Taylor and Calhoun together examine how ideals like meritocracy and authenticity have become problems for equality and solidarity, the need for stronger articulation of the idea of public good, and the challenges of thinking big without always thinking centralization. Dilip Parameshwar Gaonkar points out that even well-designed institutions will not integrate everyone, and inequality and precarity make matters worse. He calls for democracies to be prepared for violence and disorder at their margins—and to treat them with justice, not oppression. The authors call for bold action building on projects like Black Lives Matter and the Green New Deal. Policy is not enough to save democracy; it will take movements.

The Ancient Greek Roots of Human Rights

By Rachel Hall Sternberg
  • Format : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : University of Texas Press
  • Isbn : 9781477322932
  • Pages : 176
  • Category : History
  • Reads : 627
  • File Pdf: the-ancient-greek-roots-of-human-rights.pdf

Book Summary:

Although the era of the Enlightenment witnessed the rise of philosophical debates around benevolent social practice, the origins of European humane discourse date further back to Classical Athens. The Ancient Greek Roots of Human Rights analyzes the parallel confluences of cultural factors facing ancient Greeks and eighteenth-century Europeans that facilitated the creation and transmission of humane values across history. Rachel Hall Sternberg argues that precedents for the concept of human rights exist in the ancient articulation of emotion, though the ancient Greeks, much like eighteenth-century European societies, often failed to live up to those values. Merging the history of ideas with cultural history, Sternberg examines literary themes upholding empathy and human dignity from Thucydides’ and Xenophon’s histories to Voltaire’s Candide, and from Greek tragic drama to the eighteenth-century novel. She describes shared impacts of the trauma of war, the appeal to reason, and the public acceptance of emotion that encouraged the birth and rebirth of humane values.

Summary of First Principles

By Alexander Cooper
  • Format : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : BookSummaryGr
  • Isbn : 9791220261685
  • Pages :
  • Category : Juvenile Nonfiction
  • Reads : 439
  • File Pdf: summary-of-first-principles.pdf

Book Summary:

Summary of First Principles It took more than a millennium before Europe’s centuries of learning and creativity produced the Renaissance, that golden era when human intellect shone a bright light that cast out the shadows of the Dark Ages. The pace was a little faster in the New World. Less than two hundred years after the first English settlers set foot on the continent of North America, the United States had produced a Renaissance man, a man of humble beginnings who boldly left his mark in politics, science, education, philosophy, diplomacy, and innovation. That he was able to be so versatile is both a tribute to his natural intelligence and character and a testament to his homeland's inventiveness. All subsequent civilizations indeed build upon what went before. Still, Europe's legacy was so rigid that, to rise to a position of status, a man needed either his august lineage or wealthy and influential patrons. There was no religious institute of education for Benjamin Franklin to provide him with learning; there was no vast store of wealth to bankroll him. He was, in fact, deliberately and enthusiastically, a member of the middle class, a man who had pulled himself up by his bootstraps and then figured out a way, metaphorically, to make a better bootstrap. He was thrifty, patriotic, intelligent, and virtuous; he had a common-law wife, an illegitimate son, and a reputation as a flirt among the ladies of France, who adored him when he was well past the age for such dalliances. He was a pragmatist, a writer, a statesman, a scientist, an inventor, a philanthropist, a citizen; Benjamin Franklin was so many things that it took eighty-four years for him to bring them all to fruition. Benjamin Franklin, an American, is a legend. He is also endearingly, unmistakably human. Meet the man who was his nation’s first celebrity and discover how Franklin, who has been called “The First American,” remains a fascinating man whose personality has not been dimmed by the passage of time. View him in his ordinary, eighteenth-century garb and posture, but don’t be fooled: Benjamin Franklin is part of every American entrepreneur, innovator, and crusader who has ever lived because his virtues came not from his time, but from the timelessness of his talents and the boundless rejuvenation of his native soil. Here is a Preview of What You Will Get: - A Full Book Summary - An Analysis - Fun quizzes - Quiz Answers - Etc Get a copy of this summary and learn about the book.