Empire of Liberty - Review

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Empire of LibertyThe United States of America had a lot to do after the Revolutionary War. Constructs of the founding members were untested and idealistic. Could a democracy, a republic, a liberty based society work in the real world? The Old World was not convinced. Gordon S. Wood's Empire of Liberty describes the formative years of the United States between 1789 and 1815. We see American liberty takes its first steps on the world stage apart from war. Relationships between the President, Congress, and individual States become defined through a compelling narrative of the early empire. Wood has produced an academic work that is both momentous and moving. This is a story of a fledgling nation in search of it's own identity. We see the founders discovering who they really are and how they wanted to be. The author does well to focus each chapter on a particular subject and manages to balance a political history with a sociological one. There is a bounty of source material throughout each chapter and Wood's conclusions feel objective and informed.

The story of a fledgling nation in search of it's own identity.

I would recommend reading this book. It is, however, quite long and best appreciated in whole. Individual chapters can feel overwhelming and pedantic. The barrage of political parties and opinions are vast and various. Wood moves the story along while maintaining an ethic of academia.

Brent ColbyComment