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Homage to Americans: Mile-High Meditations, Close Readings, and Time-Spanning Speculations Paperback – November 23, 2010


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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Eva Brann is a member of the senior faculty at St. John's College in Annapolis, Maryland, where she has taught for fifty years. Brann holds an M.A. in Classics and a Ph.D. in Archaeology from Yale University. She is a 2005 recipient of the National Humanities Medal.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 260 pages
  • Publisher: Paul Dry Books (November 23, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1589880625
  • ISBN-13: 978-1589880627
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.5 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,139,962 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Michael Sanford on November 16, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I find it ironic that we begin these provocative essays with a discussion of tolerance and end with a meditation on the inevitability of Christianity's triumph over the primitive religions of early Mexico. I don't mean to suggest that Eva Brann's implications are simplistic. On the contrary, she is fully aware of the hundreds of years of IN-tolerance that so characterize the history of Christianity in Europe. Indeed, the high point of this volume is the essay on James Madison and his remonstrance against a bill in the early Virginia legislature to give public support to Christian teachers. Ms. Brann's wealth of scholarship is evident in all the essays but her comments on the writings of Madison and Lincoln as rhetoric - a dimension long untaught in our schools - is unique and brings especial richness to her work. As she shows, Madison is the indispensable founder of religious freedom in the United States - freedom from government endorsement of any religion, and freedom to believe and to practice freely every minority sect. Against the European background of theocratic governments and intolerant and hierarchical religious sects both catholic and protestant, Madison with Jefferson made a clean break and created something new and uniquely American. Her essay on Lincoln's Gettysburg Address compares Lincoln's focus on the deeds of the dead soldiers with Pericles' famous oration in which celebration in the present took precedence the achievement of the dead.

Among the special qualities of St. John's College where Eva Brann teaches a resistance to historicism - the reading of books against their historical and cultural setting - is surely at the core. It is a little surprising therefore to find her exploring the fascinating world of the Aztecs and the encounter with colonial Spain.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Midwest Book Review on January 13, 2011
Format: Paperback
From the outside looking in, one can gain a true appreciation for America. "Homage to Americans: Mile-High Meditations, Close Readings, and Time-Spanning Speculations" is a collection of writings from Eva Brann who has immigrated to America early in life and has come to love her new home fondly and strongly. She has essays on democracy and the success and flaws of the American system. "Homage to Americans" is a patriotic and driven read with much to think about on America as a whole.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Billie Pritchett on November 16, 2014
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Maybe there's some value to Eva Brann's "Homage to Americans" but I don't see it. The first part of the book are basically notes Brann took while at the airport where she ruminates about ideas she takes to be essentially American. The second part is in my view some unhelpful readings of some historical American documents, one by Madison and the other Lincoln's Gettysburg Address. The third part look like a couple of lectures, one aimed at a military audience, and the other I don't remember. I was really hoping to read the book and learn something but I can't say that I did.
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