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Reviews for The Americans: The Colonial Experience
Daniel Boorstin gave us a great history book when he wrote 'The Americans'. In it he tells of the major initial settlements in the American colonies, 'the Puritans of Massachusetts Bay', 'the Quakers of Pennsylvania', 'the Settlers of Georgia', and 'the Virginians'. He explains how their values varied from one another which influenced how their lives differed as much as did the climate and geography in which they lived. He tells of the first institutions of learning, as well as about the printed word in the colonies (books, newspapers, and pamphlets). Boorstin also explains how the colonists often had to be well rounded because they had to be able to do so much for themselves. For instance, there was a lack of lawyers and law books in the early colonies, so men had to learn law on their own if they wanted to succeed. I found it interesting that Thomas Jefferson wanted to ensure that his daughter got a well rounded education, which was uncommon for the era. He felt that the time called for his daughter to be educated not just in the arts and literature, but also in science because she would need the skills to be able to run a family, household, and estate. Boorstin also gives great insight into the world of medicine and science during the colonial era, as well as various viewpoints on warfare.read more
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