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American Studies Books

  • A Revolutionary Friendship
  • A Great Disorder
  • We Are the Leaders We Have Been Looking For
  • The Contest over National Security
  • A World of Enemies

Explore the latest scholarship from the field of American studies.

Author - Editorial Staff

Date - 30 September 2023

Time to read - 1 min

From April 1, 2024, through April 19, 2024, British Association for American Studies conference attendees receive 30% off select titles with promo code BAS24.

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  • A Revolutionary Friendship

    A Revolutionary Friendship

    Washington, Jefferson, and the American Republic

    Francis D. Cogliano

    The first full account of the relationship between George Washington and Thomas Jefferson, countering the legend of their enmity while drawing vital historical lessons from the differences that arose between them.

    Martha Washington’s worst memory was the death of her husband. Her second worst was Thomas Jefferson’s awkward visit to pay his respects subsequently. Indeed, by the time George W...

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  • A Great Disorder

    A Great Disorder

    National Myth and the Battle for America

    Richard Slotkin

    As culture wars pit us against each other, A Great Disorder looks to the myths that have shaped American identity and reveals how they have brought us to the brink of an existential crisis.

    Red America and Blue America are so divided they could be two different countries, with wildly diverging views of why government exists and who counts as American. Their ideologies are grounded in differ...

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  • We Are the Leaders We Have Been Looking For

    We Are the Leaders We Have Been Looking For

    Eddie S. Glaude Jr.

    From the author of the New York Times bestseller Begin Again, a politically astute, lyrical meditation on how ordinary Black Americans can shake off their reliance on a small group of professional politicians and pursue self-cultivation and grassroots movements to achieve a more just and perfect democracy.

    We are more than the circumstances of our lives, and what we do matters. In We Are th...

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  • The Contest over National Security

    The Contest over National Security

    FDR, Conservatives, and the Struggle to Claim the Most Powerful Phrase in American Politics

    Peter Roady

    A new history shows how FDR developed a vision of national security focused not just on protecting Americans against physical attack but also on ensuring their economic well-being—and how the nascent conservative movement won the battle to narrow its meaning, durably reshaping US politics.

    Americans take for granted that national security comprises physical defense against attacks. But the...

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  • A World of Enemies

    A World of Enemies

    America’s Wars at Home and Abroad from Kennedy to Biden

    Osamah F. Khalil

    A sobering account of how the United States trapped itself in endless wars—abroad and at home—and what it might do to break free.

    Over the past half-century, Americans have watched their country extend its military power to what seemed the very ends of the earth. America’s might is felt on nearly every continent—and even on its own streets. Decades ago, the Wars on Drugs and Terror broke do...

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  • Mason-Dixon

    Mason-Dixon

    Crucible of the Nation

    Edward G. Gray

    “A magisterial yet highly nuanced account that ventures back and forth across Mason and Dixon’s fabled demarcation line as audaciously as 18th-century raiding parties once did.”—Harold Holzer, Wall Street Journal

    The first comprehensive history of the Mason-Dixon Line—a dramatic story of imperial rivalry and settler-colonial violence, the bonds of slavery and the fight for freedom.

    T...

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  • King Hancock

    King Hancock

    The Radical Influence of a Moderate Founding Father

    Brooke Barbier

    A rollicking portrait of the paradoxical patriot, whose measured pragmatism helped make American independence a reality.

    Americans are surprisingly more familiar with his famous signature than with the man himself. In this spirited account of John Hancock’s life, Brooke Barbier depicts a patriot of fascinating contradictions—a child of enormous privilege who would nevertheless become a voic...

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  • Why White Liberals Fail

    Why White Liberals Fail

    Race and Southern Politics from FDR to Trump

    Anthony J. Badger

    It’s not the economy, stupid: How liberal politicians’ faith in the healing powers of economic growth—and refusal to address racial divisions—fueled reactionary politics across the South.

    From FDR to Clinton, charismatic Democratic leaders have promised a New South—a model of social equality and economic opportunity that is always just around the corner. So how did the region become the str...

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