《New Book Condition + George Washington Biography》Richard Brookshiser - FOUNDING FATHER : Rediscovering George Washington
A revisionist biography of George Washington chronicling his quarter-century career in public life, from his heroic deeds as a leader thru the legacy that's been passed down to his political descendants. In this thought-provoking look at George Washington as soldier and statesman, Richard Brookhiser traces the astonishing achievements of Washington's career and illuminates how his character and his values shaped the beginnings of American politics. Brookhiser recaptures the real George Washington in this against-the-grain biographical study that chronicles a remarkable quarter-century career in public life--a record of achievements that is virtually unmatched by any modern leader. Brookhiser recounts Washington's heroic deeds as general and president, his temperament and training, and reflects upon his legacy. A slaveowner who had no children of his own, George Washington, the "father of our country," parented wife Martha's two children and treated his staff during the Revolutionary War as "surrogate children," according to Brookhiser. George seems to have had weak emotional ties to his own father, Augustine Washington, who died when his son was 11. Despite having the equivalent of a grade-school education, the first president, an avid theatergoer, read widely in politics and current affairs. His destiny as the nation's leader filled him with anxiety, and his aristocratic civility held in check a dangerous temper. Although this Founding Father, a rich plantation owner, hoped slavery would end, he acquiesced to the status quo and refused to sell any of his slaves over the last 20 years of his life. Born an Anglican, Washington, who joined the Freemasons in his early '20s, believed in the providential workings of a God who is an active agent. In this incisive biographical study, National Review senior editor Brookhiser (The Way of the WASP) assembles revealing personal details to help reconcile the public persona with the private man. Review From Booklist: National Review senior editor Brookhiser seeks to restore knowledge of and reverence for George Washington, who is today (the author's introduction asserts) "in our textbooks and our wallets, but not our hearts." Concepts like character, heroism, and fatherhood are also subject to rehabilitation here in what Brookhiser calls "a moral biography in the tradition of Plutarch of Washington as founder and father of his country." Brookhiser first analyzes Washington's performance as Revolutionary War general, in the move from Articles of Confederation to Constitution, and in domestic and foreign policy crises of his presidential years; then he examines Washington's "nature, his morals, and his ideas" ; and finally considers the details of Washington's political "fatherhood" and its consequences, suggesting that "the deepest source of our distance from him" may be "the resentment and puzzlement that come from being let go" by our fathers once we become adults. A Brookhiser article on Washington was a recent cover story for The Atlantic, so publication of his book-length study will likely generate requests. Mary Carroll
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