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With profound knowledge and great style, J.J. Collins sets out to explore the creation of the American Constitution and the birth of the American Republic, as well as the people behind these events. This is not a very long book, but it packs a wallop of information, at the same time managing to convey the feel, texture and attitudes of that era.
We get to meet not only James Madison himself, but also the other greats of American history: George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and Alexander Hamilton, among others. The author takes us to the historic 1787 Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia where we witness first-hand the process of creation of the Constitution.
The uncharted territory that was the American Constitution made it difficult to reconcile all the varying opinions and interests in order to arrive at one document, which would unite the whole country. James Madison and others were heavily influenced by the philosophy of the European Era of Enlightenment. In turn, the American Constitution would later become the symbol of freedom and the fight against tyranny in Europe and elsewhere.
Ironically, some of the most shameful moments of American history were also enshrined in the Constitution, including the justification of slavery and the fact that each slave was considered only 3/5 of a white man, as well as the creation of the Electoral College - the US Presidential Election's unfair and archaic indirect voting system, which still persists today.Read more ›
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It's not an easy task to tackle all of the major accomplishments of such a brilliant mind in one book, taking into account all of the obstacles and opposition he encountered along the way. Author J.J. Collins achieves this and more, to illustrate the strengths and political prowess of one of the most important and under-recognized Presidents.
For make no mistake: James Madison is one of the most brilliant Americans that ever lived. The only man who could change Thomas Jefferson's mind, who defeated no less an adversary than post-Colonial Virginia Governor Patrick Henry (the same guy who famously said "Give me Liberty or Give me Death!") before the age of 40, who swayed public opinion against Presidents Washington and Adams in due course, who oversaw the annexation of the Louisiana Purchase (thereby doubling the size of the Republic in one fell swoop), who founded the political party to which BOTH Republicans and Democrats owe their ancestry, who slashed governmental bloat AND military spending even while wars raged abroad...
You need to know more about this President! And this is the book to give it to you.
A small, soft-spoken man, who had a hard time addressing large crowds, nevertheless wrote the Constitution as we know it and conceived of a new form of government: where the monarch shares power with the individual states, and then got everyone in the fledgling country on both sides of the issue to agree with it and ratify it. The author of the Bill of Rights in a time when the very concept of having rights at all was revolutionary. Collins deftly portrays how James Madison showed the way for every Founding Father that came before him and every citizen that came after.
It's been two hundred years since Madison served as President. Would that our current occupants of the Oval Office cared as much for the survival of the Republic or the protection of individual rights as he did! HIGHLY RECOMMENDED
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