Founding Brothers by Joseph J. Ellis
The Revolutionary Generation

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Synopsis

In this landmark work of history, the National Book Award—winning author of American Sphinx explores how a group of greatly gifted but deeply flawed individuals–Hamilton, Burr, Jefferson, Franklin, Washington, Adams, and Madison–confronted the overwhelming challenges before them to set the course for our nation.

The United States was more a fragile hope than a reality in 1790. During the decade that followed, the Founding Fathers–re-examined here as Founding Brothers–combined the ideals of the Declaration of Independence with the content of the Constitution to create the practical workings of our government. Through an analysis of six fascinating episodes–Hamilton and Burr’s deadly duel, Washington’s precedent-setting Farewell Address, Adams’ administration and political partnership with his wife, the debate about where to place the capital, Franklin’s attempt to force Congress to confront the issue of slavery and Madison’s attempts to block him, and Jefferson and Adams’ famous correspondence–Founding Brothers brings to life the vital issues and personalities from the most important decade in our nation’s history.



From the Trade Paperback edition.
 

About Joseph J. Ellis

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Joseph J. Ellis won the Pulitzer Prize for Founding Brothers. His portrait of Thomas Jefferson, American Sphinx, won the National Book Award. He is the Ford Foundation Professor of History at Mount Holyoke College in Massachusetts, where he lives with his wife and their youngest son.
 
Published February 5, 2002 by Vintage. 304 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, History, Political & Social Sciences, Education & Reference, Literature & Fiction, War. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Founding Brothers

Kirkus Reviews

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An accomplished historian and biographer seeks nothing less than to frame the Framers, bringing into clear focus the personalities and human dynamic that shaped and defined the early republic.

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The New York Times

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It’s one of the curiosities of American history that there is no definitive single-volume chronicle of the Revolutionary War, the kind of serious but approachable book that would grasp the conflict in the way that James M.

May 30 2010 | Read Full Review of Founding Brothers: The Revolu...

The New York Times

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Ellis’s “Founding Brothers,” I asked my Newsweek colleague Evan Thomas (himself then at work on a biography of John Paul Jones) to write an article for the magazine on what we called “Founders’ Chic.” Why, we wondered, were so many millennial Americans so intrigued by the stories of dead white me...

Nov 11 2007 | Read Full Review of Founding Brothers: The Revolu...

The Guardian

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Founding Brothers Joseph J Ellis 299pp, Faber, £12.99 Englishness took time to drain from the generation that made the United States of America.

Mar 02 2002 | Read Full Review of Founding Brothers: The Revolu...

NPR

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NPR coverage of Founding Brothers: The Revolutionary Generation by Joseph J. Ellis. News, author interviews, critics' picks and more.

Jun 21 2013 | Read Full Review of Founding Brothers: The Revolu...

Book Reporter

Partly because the founders were unable to deal adequately with certain issues such as slavery and the Indian question, or with the proper balance between federal and states rights, Ellis contends, "The very purpose of government was subtly transformed from an ultimate arbiter to a framework for ...

Dec 22 2010 | Read Full Review of Founding Brothers: The Revolu...

Project MUSE

It was Madison, the "acknowledged master of the inoffensive argument," of parliamentary procedure, and of the principles of governance, whom Ellis credits for crafting a prudent compromise despite his personal opposition to Hamilton's plan.

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Scholars And Rogues

His refreshing and often irreverent candor provides the clearest window into the deeper ambitions and clashing vanities that propelled them all.)” Ellis’s book tells the story of the Founders through six key episodes: the duel between Hamilton and Burr;

Sep 12 2010 | Read Full Review of Founding Brothers: The Revolu...

Ben Casnocha

Start-up entrepreneurs who are queasy about picking up a book on U.S. history might consider this: America is the world’s most successful start-up.

Dec 26 2006 | Read Full Review of Founding Brothers: The Revolu...

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