Thaddeus Russell investigates an interesting part of American history that is often ignored. He argues that the Founding Fathers disapproved of the revelry on display in eighteenth-century America. “On nearly every block…there was a public place where one could drink, sing, dance, have sex, argue politics, gamble, play games, or generally carouse with men, women, children, whites, blacks, Indians, the rich, the poor, and the middling. Rarely have Americans had more fun.”
I have not read the book, but his summary at Alternet is noteworthy. However, to come to his conclusion it seems that he has relied too heavily on John Adams and on Puritan leaders to make his case. It would have been more accurate to say “some early U.S. leaders.”
11 Freedoms That Drunks, Slackers, Prostitutes and Pirates Pioneered—and the Founding Fathers Opposed | Alternet.
The president of the New-York Historical Society, Louise Mirrer, argues for a unified American history that incorporates diversity: “The case for teaching American American history has always been strong. But at a time when much of the world is in turmoil, that case is even more powerful. Many nations today are finding it difficult, if not impossible, to integrate different ethnic, religious and racial groups. That’s why it’s so important that our schools, colleges and museums should teach the unity of American history as well as the diversity. We must make sure that Americans honor their differences, but also know that they have a shared history — a history that is the indispensable basis for an inclusive, tolerant society.” I think this would be a more interesting and positive way to teach US history. What do you think?
The Case for ‘American’ American History | Louise Mirrer.