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Author Topic: American History  (Read 29514 times)
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Bob
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« Reply #1455 on: November 06, 2007, 10:27:30 PM »

 Garry Wills's book Henry Adams and the Making of America (2005) examines Adams's History (HISTORY OF THE UNITED STATES DURING THE ADMINISTRATIONS OF JEFFERSON & MADISON), and proclaims it a neglected masterpiece. 

And that it is. Henry Adams is more than a novelist---he made United States History into a discipline and is noted, along with Bancroft, as one of the founding father's of American History. He was president of the American Historical Association and chairman of Harvard University's American History Department. His biography of Albert Gallatin is still read today. His relationship with Theodore Roosevelt was very close and he was influential during his Presidency. 

Reading Henry Adams is reading about the develoment of the discipline of American History as well as reading about Adams' place in the history of his time and his influence on that time.

The only comparable today might have been Arthur Schlessinger, Jr who both wrote history and participated in it.
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Dzimas
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« Reply #1456 on: November 06, 2007, 11:48:25 PM »

Seems like The Education of Henry Adams is the winner.



Thanks for the heads up on Wills book, robert, and it is great to see so many persons coming back to the forum to voice their support for the book.  Maybe we can set a date to start the discussion?
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weezo
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« Reply #1457 on: November 07, 2007, 06:52:04 AM »

I look forward to reading the discussion on the Henry Adams. Perhaps the discussion will indicate he warrants a place on Famous Americans.
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Dzimas
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« Reply #1458 on: November 07, 2007, 07:52:42 AM »

I look forward to reading the discussion on the Henry Adams. Perhaps the discussion will indicate he warrants a place on Famous Americans.

Weezo, he already has warranted his place, and it is much more than his famous pedigree, which is why we are discussing him.  I would at the very least sample some of his writing in the gutenberg link,

http://www.gutenberg.org/dirs/etext00/eduha10.txt

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weezo
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« Reply #1459 on: November 07, 2007, 10:59:10 AM »

Dzimas,

I will see as the discussion unfolds. John Adams and John Quincy Adams have a place as past presidents. While I do have a category for writers, it is mostly used as an additional category for those who are famous in some other way and also wrote, such as Ben Franklin, Sally Ride, and Helen Keller. Langston Hughes is the only writer who has no other claim to fame, and the only reason he is there is because he is on the list of Famous Americans for Virginia Students, for whom the pages were started many years ago.
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Shirley Marcus1
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« Reply #1460 on: November 07, 2007, 11:23:06 AM »

Thank you Thanatopsy for suggesting transendentalists.  Thanks Dzimas for your help.  Thank you Bob.


Thanatopsy has read more than 12 authors in this category and knows a lot and has a lot of interesting facts to tell us.

Here is an "Education of Henry Adams" enjoy.
http://xroads.virginia.edu/~HYPER/hadams/eha01.html

Happy Thanksgiving everyone.
Lisa, if you want to tell us about "Ester" she sounds fascinating.
Carol, I am sure you will find interesting philosophy in this and let us know.
Hello John, I am told you are interested in Adams.
     
« Last Edit: November 09, 2007, 12:35:01 PM by Shirley Marcus1 » Logged
Bob
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« Reply #1461 on: November 07, 2007, 05:51:55 PM »



Quote
Perhaps the discussion will indicate he warrants a place on Famous Americans.

Here's a list indicating he wrote the best non-fiction book of the century: THE EDUCATION OF HENRY ADAMS.
http://www.mmisi.org/ir/35_01/50worst.pdf

Adams is already on the list. There's no need  to examine whether he belongs on any such list---its just a question of WHERE on the list he belongs. The problem is there's no place for him in today's teaching cirriculums (sic) given state and federal standards. In my mind the reading of this book should be a MUST, should be required,  at least on the undergraduate level. It's really not an "autobiography"  as Ernest Samuels points out: "The focus of the book was somewhat blurred by the subtitle "An Autobiography" which was added by the publisher." (See Introduction by Ernest  Samuels in EDUCATION  edited by Samuels and published through Houghton Mifflin in 1974 at page xvii)




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Bob
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« Reply #1462 on: November 07, 2007, 05:57:25 PM »

Good Lord!!! I have a first edition of EDUCATION which I just found in a pile of books laying on the floor waiting to be put in its proper place in my library---I'll put it away tonight----I'll work with the 1974 Houghton Mifflin edition. Most editions are excellent---I looked at the current one available at B&N for  $12 and its just fine--it's sofcover.
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weezo
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« Reply #1463 on: November 07, 2007, 10:40:14 PM »

Thanks for the Link to the Gutenberg Press copy of the book. I read a way into it, and nope, the style absolutely does not interest me. I read through a beginning discussion of the privilege that Henry grew up in - enough to notice that one grandfather kept up with the styles and one lived in the elegence of another time. Somehow, I guess I'm supposed to develop sympathy for this unfortunate boy born in the cold of New England and, despite having all necessities, some luxuries, and a fine pedigree for braggin' rights, he still took note of his grandfather's furniture as shabby instead of considering them antiques and memories of another time in life.

I wait to see how you will discuss this.
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nytempsperdu
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« Reply #1464 on: November 07, 2007, 11:29:44 PM »

Hard to resist when it's so well recommended and is right in front of one onscreen, will try to read and be ready to go on 11/20.  THANKS!
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Bob
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« Reply #1465 on: November 08, 2007, 05:32:48 AM »

Quote
I guess I'm supposed to develop sympathy for this unfortunate boy

Quite frankly, you're not  "supposed" to do anything. If you choose to read the book you may very well form an entirely different opinion. But if you are going to prejudge an entire book on just a few pages---that's up to you. If you don't like what you read--don't read it. 
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Dzimas
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« Reply #1466 on: November 08, 2007, 07:04:11 AM »

Weezo, I'm not quite sure how you interpreted an "unfortunate boy" growing up in Boston and Quincy.  Henry Adams saw himself as being very fortunate.  I like the way he describes his childhood, and the noble presence of his grandfather John Q. Adams.

I ordered the Wills' book, Robert, and should get it in 5-10 days according to the abebooks supplier.  Have we set Nov. 20 as the start day?  If not, we can move it to Dec. 1 if persons need to prep themselves more for the discussion.

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weezo
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« Reply #1467 on: November 08, 2007, 12:44:18 PM »

Bob,

You are right. If I don't like the book, I needn't read it. Even if it is free online, which is very nice.

I'm doing fine reading Cabazo de Vaca, The Head of a Cow, and making new discoveries and observations of raw America jumping at me on every page. I am about half way through another book on Boston, during the Revolutionary War, in Paul Revere and the times he lived in by Edna Forbes.

And, I am reading yet, How the Indians Lost their Land - all about how court decisions could become law, and be enacted without representation by thosee affected by the decision. Judgement on the human worthiness of Native Americans pass down by pronouncement rather than by legislative action brought about by a legislature that included representative of the Natives.

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Bob
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« Reply #1468 on: November 09, 2007, 07:10:17 AM »

I can't find the post right now, but someone wanted to know about my library. I have some 3,500 +/- books spread out over a two bedroom apartment. One of the bedroom's is a book room or a library if you will. I'm as much a collector as a reader. Anyhow, the bulk of my collection is about 2,000 books on American Presidents--biographies over every president, the remaining 1,500 are books on United States History and a small collection of Soviet and Communist Chinese history. I like contemporary history--thus I have books published as early as 1750, I think, and  on up--not many, (200+/-) but they're peppered throughout the collection as I integrate my books--first editions are right in with current books. I double shelve books--my book cases line most of the walls of the rooms--most are 3 or 4 shelves high--I do not like the dominance of those huge cases you find in libraries. US History books are in chronolgical order and Presidents are in order of term.  I have separate sections on Black history and the Civil War and Reconstruction and sections on Jefferson, on Hamilton, and on Franklin and on Nazi Germany, the Soviet Union and Communist China. ( and just two or three of those stacks begging to be integrated into the shelving--I can't seem ever to get the stacks down to a roar--I suppose its a part of the collecting process--so every once in a while I get a "find" in them--as I did with the Adams book.)

In my book room or library room there's a lamp, a chair (a Queen Anne) and books---and a door which I close when I read. Nothing else is in the room except a small table so I can eat--I eat when I read. Best of all, there's total silence in the room--its very relaxing.
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thanatopsy
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« Reply #1469 on: November 09, 2007, 08:04:25 AM »

http://www.villagevoice.com/news/0745,robbins,78255,2.html


``Veteran Village Voice photographer Fred W. McDarrah died in his sleep at home in Greenwich Village early Tuesday morning. He was 81.

Over a 50-year span, McDarrah documented the rise of the Beat Generation, the city’s postmodern art movement, its off-off-Broadway actors, troubadours, politicians, agitators and social protests.``


Click on gallery and you will see many photos that are quite familiar to those of us who grew up during the 1960s. McDarrah was a true artist.  Gone, but his work lives on!
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