Digital List Price: $12.99
Kindle Price: $9.99

Save $15.01 (60%)

These promotions will be applied to this item:

Some promotions may be combined; others are not eligible to be combined with other offers. For details, please see the Terms & Conditions associated with these promotions.

Deliver to your Kindle or other device

Deliver to your Kindle or other device

Flip to back Flip to front
Audible Narration Playing... Paused   You are listening to a sample of the Audible narration for this Kindle book.
Learn more

Framing a Legend: Exposing the Distorted History of Thomas Jefferson and Sally Hemings Kindle Edition

8 customer reviews

See all 2 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle
"Please retry"
$9.99

Length: 275 pages Word Wise: Enabled

Dancing with the Devil in the City of God
"Dancing with the Devil in the City of God"
A deeply reported and beautifully written biography of the seductive and chaotic city of Rio de Janeiro from prizewinning journalist Juliana Barbassa. Learn more

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Since Fawn Brodie’s Thomas Jefferson: An Intimate History (1974), or Annette Gordon-Reed’s The Hemingses of Monticello (2008), popular belief holds that the third U.S. president begat a family with his slave. Holowchak is not the first disputant (see William Hyland’s In Defense of Thomas Jefferson, 2009), but he may be the most pugilistic. Taking Brodie and Gordon-Reed to task, Holowchak flays their works as weak arrangements of the several incontestably known facts about the enslaved woman in question, Sally Hemings, into a liaison with Jefferson. A philosopher by profession, Holowchak illustrates his points with syllogisms—he contests probabilities underlying DNA evidence which, supporters of a Hemings-Jefferson relationship assert, indicate that a relationship existed; and he pummels arguments favoring a connection for what he considers defects of logic. From his exercise in demolishing Brodie, Gordon-Reed, and others as fabulists, Holowchak switches to an approbation of Jefferson’s character, which he maintains casts the Hemings thesis in further doubt. His argument aside, Holowchak may irritate some in his references to the subtext of this historical controversy, race, yet he gains a hearing for defying conventional wisdom. --Gilbert Taylor

Review

"Framing a Legend will be regarded as a monumental work in American history. It is brilliant, illuminating, and refreshing. Dr. Holowchak meticulously illustrates serious flaws in the ‘immorality of agenda-driven scholarship’ of popular scholars. This well-written volume is a must-read for all lovers of history."
—Cynthia Burton, author of Jefferson Vindicated

"A superb work that demonstrates its argument beyond question and, along the way, should mortify defenders of the Jefferson-Hemings thesis for their slipshod and even dishonest work."
—Forrest McDonald, distinguished professor of history emeritus, University of Alabama

Product Details

  • File Size: 757 KB
  • Print Length: 275 pages
  • Publisher: Prometheus Books (April 16, 2013)
  • Publication Date: April 16, 2013
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00BH0VPEW
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #775,548 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
  •  Would you like to give feedback on images?


More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, read author blogs, and more.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

17 of 19 people found the following review helpful By James Nelems on May 5, 2013
Format: Hardcover
Framing a Legend is not the first book to dissect and discredit the theory that Thomas Jefferson fathered children with Sally Hemings (notably "in Defense of Thomas Jeferson " by William Hyland in 2009 is also a noble effort ) but perhaps the most direct attack on specific proponents of the theory, notably the books by Fawn Brodie, Gordon-Reed and Andrew Burstein. One would certainly like to hear those authors response to Dr. Holowchak, but that is probably unlikely. The best summary that can be made about the topic is that nobody really knows and probably will never know. As far as Dr. Holowchak is concerned, he seems to be making an excellent case that it is more unlikely than likely that no such liaison ever happened. i would agree that the weight of the evidence ,, is that it never happened
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Framing a Legend: Exposing the Distorted History of Thomas Jefferson and Sally Hemings Hardcover - by M. Andrew Holowchak

Author M. Andrew Holowchak critically examines well-known books by Fawn Brodie, Annette Gordon-Reed, and Andrew Burstein, labeling their views as "three prominent spins." He then delves into what we know about Thomas Jefferson's character, showing that the historical facts do not suggest any romantic interest on Jefferson's part in his female slaves. Turning to the genetic evidence, Holowchak points out that, though DNA analysis indicates the presence of a "Y"-chromosome from some Jefferson male in the Hemings family line, it is unwarranted to conclude that this must have come from Thomas Jefferson.

"Framing a Legend:" is a penetrating critical perspective on the question of Thomas Jefferson's paternity that will make you rethink recent conventional wisdom. It is accepted by most scholars that Jefferson had a lengthy affair, (thirty-eight years), with his slave Sally Hemings and fathered at least one of her children, a conclusion based on a 1998 DNA study published in Nature and on the work of historian Annette Gordon-Reed. Framing a Legend argues compellingly that the DNA evidence is inconclusive and that there are remarkable flaws, (no direct evidence was used from Thomas Jefferson), in the leading historical scholarship purporting to show such a liaison. It critically examines well-known books by Fawn Brodie, Annette Gordon-Reed, and Andrew Burstein.

Among other defects in these authors' works, Holowchak notes selective use of evidence, ungrounded speculation, tendentious psychologizing, and unpersuasive argumentation.
Read more ›
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Format: Hardcover
Holowchak makes a fine argument that the lines of argument writers like Annette Gordon-Reed and Fawn Brodie use to "prove" Jefferson had a relationship with Sally Hemings are extremely flawed. This part of the book is great. Some writers come to Jefferson with preconceived hatchets to bury, and they proceed to bury them.

Holowchak also attacks the flawed logic of the evidence to tie Jefferson to Hemings, which is: (1) Jefferson was around when Hemings got pregnant, (2) people accused them of having a relationship, (3) DNA proves one of Hemings's children has male Jefferson DNA. (4) Thus, Jefferson MUST have fathered ALL of Hemings's children.

But this, logically, is an argument that does not necessarily follow. It may, but it may not. (1) Other Jeffersons were around when Hemings got pregnant, and maybe Hemings wasn't always around Monticello when Jefferson was; (2) accusations don't necessarily prove anything (as another supposed African American descendant of Jefferson, Thomas Woodson, has no Jefferson DNA); (3) just because the DNA is Jefferson DNA, doesn't mean it's THOMAS Jefferson DNA; (4) just because Eston Hemings has Jefferson DNA doesn't mean that Sally's other children were fathered by a Jefferson.

That said, a convincing case is not made that Jefferson DID NOT have a relationship Hemings. (It is hard to prove a negative, anyway.) This book serves to knock Gordon-Reed's agenda-driven research down a peg, but it doesn't invalidate it. And, the argument that Jefferson would not have had sex with her because of his principles is, well, a hard sell. History tells us principled people oftentimes lose their principles all the time when sex is dangled before them. A better book than Hyland 's "In Defense of Thomas Jefferson."

Did Thomas Jefferson have a sexual relationship with Sally Hemings? Who knows for sure. This book tells us why we can only say "maybe" and why those books that say "for certain" are, in fact, stretching a bit.
2 Comments Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
8 of 10 people found the following review helpful By 4moreshelflife on October 7, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
Unbelievable information in this book. Really makes you think. This in-depth interesting study on the facts will open your eyes and make you realize that we may have the accused the wrong Jefferson.

This should be on your Jefferson shelf...next to the other books it corrects.
1 Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again

Forums

There are no discussions about this product yet.
Be the first to discuss this product with the community.
Start a new discussion
Topic:
First post:
Prompts for sign-in