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1775: A Good Year for Revolution

1775: A Good Year for Revolution

Written by Kevin Phillips

Narrated by Arthur Morey


1775: A Good Year for Revolution

Written by Kevin Phillips

Narrated by Arthur Morey

ratings:
3/5 (2 ratings)
Length:
25 hours
Released:
Nov 27, 2012
ISBN:
9781469203188
Format:
Audiobook

Description

What if the year we have long commemorated as America's defining moment was in fact misleading? What if the real events that signaled the historic shift from colony to country took place earlier, and that the true story of our nation's emergence reveals a more complicated-and divisive-birth process?

In this major new work, iconoclastic historian and political chronicler Kevin Phillips upends the conventional reading of the American Revolution by puncturing the myth that 1776 was the struggle's watershed year. Mythology and omission have elevated 1776, but the most important year, rarely recognized, was 1775: the critical launching point of the war and Britain's imperial outrage and counterattack and the year during which America's commitment to revolution took bloody and irreversible shape.

Phillips focuses on the great battlefields and events of 1775-Congress's warlike economic ultimatums to king and parliament, New England's rage militaire, the panicked concentration of British troops in militant but untenable Boston, the stunning expulsion of royal governors up and down the seaboard, and the new provincial congresses and many hundreds of local committees that quickly reconstituted local authority in Patriot hands. These onrushing events delivered a sweeping control of territory and local government to the Patriots, one that Britain was never able to overcome. 1775 was the year in which Patriots captured British forts and fought battles from the Canadian frontier to the Carolinas, obtained the needed gunpowder in machinations that reached from the Baltic to West Africa and the Caribbean, and orchestrated the critical months of nation building in the backrooms of a secrecy-shrouded Congress. As Phillips writes, "The political realignment achieved amid revolution was unique-no other has come with simultaneous ballots and bullets."

Surveying the political climate, economic structures, and military preparations, as well as the roles of ethnicity, religion, and class, Phillips tackles the eighteenth century with the same skill and perception he has shown in analyzing contemporary politics and economics. He mines rich material as he surveys different regions and different colonies and probes how the varying agendas and expectations at the grassroots level had a huge effect on how the country shaped itself. He details often overlooked facts about the global munitions trade; about the roles of Indians, slaves, and mercenaries; and about the ideological and religious factors that played into the revolutionary fervor.

The result is a dramatic account brimming with original insights about the country we eventually became. Kevin Phillips's 1775 revolutionizes our understanding of America's origins.

Released:
Nov 27, 2012
ISBN:
9781469203188
Format:
Audiobook


About the author

Kevin Phillips, author of Wealth and Democracy, The Cousins' War, and Arrogant Capital , is a regular contributor to the Los Angeles Times, The New York Times Magazine, and The Washington Post and is a commentator for CBS and National Public Radio. He also edits his own newsletter, American Political Report. He lives in Connecticut.

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3.0
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  • (2/5)
    I did something with this book that I rarely do: I gave up.It’s a long slog, not chronological but an issue-by-issue look at the American Revolution. And it, frankly, goes on too long for what it’s trying to say.This book posits that 1776 is the only date that is given any consideration when we think of the American Revolution, and that 1775 is much more important. It’s an interesting theory, but I don’t know of anybody who thinks all of this was accomplished in one year. The entire scope of the American Revolution began in earnest in 1774, if not partially before, and the United States wasn’t firmly established until 1789, when the Constitution went into effect and Washington was elected the first president. The author seems to be pushing to move our celebrations back to 1775, but that’s not really necessary. The thought that 1775 was important is fine, and true, but why act as though the signing of the Declaration of Independence in 1776 was not worthy of marking?Ultimately, this book reads like a long dissertation. It’s more academic than general, not that reader-friendly. And a tremendous amount of it is just a survey of already-written history books and papers. He may restate it well, but I can’t really find all that much that’s new. He even acknowledges that he relies mostly on what comes before by quoting TWO books at the beginning of each chapter.It’s full of information, but it’s not must-read material. It didn’t keep me going.For more of my reviews, go to Ralphsbooks.
  • (4/5)
    So much to absorb. It took me the good part of a year to finish this baby, but I did. And I am more knowledgeable for it. Anyone that can write fact after fact and still keep my attention deserves at least a. Four star.