Most Americans know Patrick Henry as a fiery speaker whose pronouncement Give me liberty or give me death rallied American defiance to the British Crown But Henrys skills as an oratorsharpened in the small towns and courtrooms of colonial Virginiaare only one part of his vast, but largely forgotten, legacy As historian Thomas S Kidd shows, Henry cherished a vision of America as a virtuous republic with a clearly circumscribed central government These ideals brought him into bitter conflict with other Founders and were crystallized in his vociferous opposition to the U.S Constitution In Patrick Henry, Kidd pulls back the curtain on one of our most radical, passionate Founders, showing that until we understand Henry himself, we will neglect many of the Revolutions animating values....
|Title||:||Patrick Henry: First Among Patriots|
|Publisher||:||Basic Books 1 edition November 22, 2011|
|Number of Pages||:||320 pages|
|File Size||:||998 KB|
|Status||:||Available For Download|
|Last checked||:||21 Minutes ago!|
Patrick Henry: First Among Patriots Reviews
I really enjoyed this book. For the most part, I found it to be very balanced and well done. There are some places where I felt like Prof. Kidd fell into some modern, politically-correct type analysis that I don't find all that helpful. For example, Prof. Kidd seems to occaisionally accept the prevailing "wisdom" that the American War for Independence was only about money and taxes. Much could be said on this, but it will suffice here to note that this requires us to ignore the words of the Declaration of Independence itself, which talks about a lot more than money. Were all of the Founders just liars who were only concerned about finances but clothed this little financial dispute with the motherland in grandiose language about liberty, freedom, and tyranny? I find such a proposition untenable, but I realize that makes me a distinct minority and probably disqalifies me from being an intellectual due to my audacity to take these people at their word. (Further, lest there be any misunderstanding, I think that economic freedom is enormously important. Right up there with religious and political freedom, as they all go hand-in-hand. Sort of like "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness," which undoubtedly included the pursuit of property.)
"Fierce winds and roaring thunder forced him to conclude his speech. Frightened members scurried to take cover. For Henry's biographer William Wirt, the 'spirits whom he had called, seemed to have come at his bidding.' Angels or not, Henry failed to stop ratification. The convention voted the next day to approve the Constitution, 89-79." So it was that Patrick Henry was "vastly overpowered by the deep reasoning of our glorious little [James] Madison."