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Parlor Politics: In Which the Ladies of Washington Help Build a City and a Government (Jeffersonian America (Paperback)) Paperback – March 1, 2002
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From Publishers Weekly
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
Parlor Politics is a stimulating, lively, and subtle book that enlarges our understanding of how, in just half a century, Washington City became an important world capital.(Alan Pell Crawford Wall Street Journal)
For those whose knowledge of early Washington and its politics is in need of repair, Parlor Politics provides a fresh perspective and rich details― history at its most readable.(Jeff Sharlet Washington Post)
What Ms. Allgor's history suggests is that the nation that dares to criticize its first lady's fashion sense may be a very healthy one indeed.(Emily Eakin New York Times)
In this scholarly yet animated and thought-provoking analysis, Allgor presents her groundbreaking research on the critical role that women played in the early days of Washington politics.... Allgor... combines excellent research, which draws on primary archival material, with a flair for expressive writing.(Publishers Weekly, *starred review)
An extraordinary piece of work, easily one of the most intellectually original and stylishly elegant first books I have ever read. Allgor's treatment of the role of women brings them into the center of the story of America's early political history and demonstrates that the republican values so central to the ideology of the post-Revolutionary era actually required the presence of women to permit the federal government to function. It's the kind of argument that seems utterly self-evident but in fact no one has made it before in anything like this persuasive way. Throughout the text, one encounters a truly lyrical presence, cajoling, whispering, taking us aside (as at an elegant dinner party) to talk interestingly about what the evidence means.(Joseph J. Ellis, author of Founding Brothers: The Revolutionary Generation and American Sphinx: The Character of Thomas Jefferson)
Parlor Politics is an absolute gem of historical research and writing. Again and again―and yet again―it opens fresh views on the political culture of the early Republic. Moreover, its sprightly, sparkling prose will delight scholars and general readers alike.(John Demos, Yale University, author of The Unredeemed Captive: A Family Story from Early America)
Parlor Politics is cultural history at its best. Showing how style and substance merged into social power, Catherine Allgor has recovered the fascinating political role of women in the Washington of Jefferson and his successors.(Joyce Appleby, author of Inheriting the Revolution: The First Generation of Americans)
Allgor's concern with the blurred lines between official and unofficial politics, government and society, image making and power sharing, resonates loudly in our own time.(US News & World Report)
Ms. Allgor's argument is more than a new twist on the history of high society. Parlor Politics, her first book, has opened not just a new window on the past, but floodgates.(Chronicle of Higher Education)
Top Customer Reviews
In Parlor Politics, Allgor documents the vital role that women played in the creation of a society during (arguably) the most fragile period in our history. One wrong move and the whole deomcracy concept could've gone out the window. Women were able to step in and do things that men couldn't, and under the guise of furthering their family became real movers and shakers in the early washington scene. Allgor documents the time of Jefferson through the Jackson presidency and does so with a style that is often missing in academic texts. It is easy to see why this book is quickly becoming an influential work in the history of Washington and the construction of america.
If you enjoy this book, you may want to also read "good wives" by laurel thatcher ulrich...more dry, but also interesting.