Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Founding Brothers

by Joseph Ellis

"...there is nothing new under the sun." (Eccl 1:9)

Founding Brothers made this abundantly clear. From the birth of our nation until now politicians have been debating many of the same issues, have been tickling the ears of the people, have been "flip-flopping" and have been self-importantly trying to make history.

Ellis presents the founding of our nation in six separate sections, which relate much of our early history while attempting to shed light on the relationships among these men. The author tried to humanize them using records and letters, yet emphasized that Jefferson, Franklin, Washington, Adams, Hamilton and the rest, had a heightened sense of their historical significance. They recognized they were plotting a new course, their decisions were extremely crucial and they believed the success or failure of this new nation rested on their shoulders. It is clear that Ellis is partial to Adams, presenting him with sympathy while painting Jefferson with a darker brush.

The narration in this audio was stiff and text-book like, the separate sections didn't build upon one another as chapters, making it a bit choppy. I'm not sure if I'd have stuck it out in text, because it was sometimes hard to keep listening. I rarely read straight history, so don't have much to compare it to, which also makes me feel a bit unqualified to rate it. It was good information.

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