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People of Plenty: Economic Abundance and the American Character (Walgreen Foundation Lectures) 3rd Impression 1958 Edition
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Top Customer Reviews
To begin with, if Arthur Schlesinger Jr. is correct that "History is to a Nation what Memory is to an individual", national character is the changing memory of a nation. This is no new assertion, but the author argues that popular generalizations of national character are incorrect. They weave traits and habits in there descriptions, and so they "show how badly the true analysis of national character will be hindered if historians, like the blindmen who examined the elephant, mistake the part for the whole" (p. 13). The problem is that nations are made up of people, and people's characteristics are cultural, political, economic, historical, and so on. Rather than nation units defining character, national character may be conceived as a national culture expressed as a political unit called a nation.
Previous explanations of national character, and here the author sweeps the canvas as only a historian can do, have been flawed. Many paid little attention to what character actually is, or "how they would define the `nation' as the unit to which the character is attributed" (p.20).Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I first read this book while in graduate school now more than thirty years ago and I found it stimulating enough to carry around with me ever since. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Roger D. Launius
Bought this for a history class and absolutely loved it! Great read whether it's required for a class or if it just sparks your interest.Published 21 months ago by Heather