Critical Book Review: The American Revolution
This paper critically analyzes the book American Revolution by Gordon Wood which was published by Modern library in the year 2003. The book has two hundred and forty four pages and it’s a concise summary of events as well as the circumstance that surround the seminal conflict either philosophical or physical as it pertains to the American history. In his book wood clearly details the seed of revolution and he is particular with the disgruntlement on the part of the colonialists that arose from the grueling British policies. In addition to that wood then describes of the war fare as well as its aftermath and specific is the bitter and fraught battle that helped in the drawing of the governing blue print fro America. The book basically seeks to get answers regarding the causes of American Revolution, its character and finally the consequences that resulted.
In his book Gordon gives a detailed review of the political, historical as well as the intellectual events and ideas that form part and parcel of the fascinating American history and he manages to do so in an interesting and thought provoking way. Wood breaks the book into seven portions and they include the following: the origin of American Revolution, the American resistance, the American Revolution, constitution making and the war, the republicanisms, the republican society and finally the federal constitution. In each of the above sated chapters the writer manages to interweave the economic, political, cultural as well as the intellectual issues to make the book yield a comprehensive picture of the events that took place during the American Revolution.
In his book American Revolution wood describes the events that preceded the revolution as having some inertia and that few people were set out on the path of separation and revolution but this orientation was changed as ideas and events took place and this served to depend the crisis as opposed to abating it. According to wood the crises at the time was not only based on the prevailing economic interests or even the colonialist moral crusade but it was instead based on a complicated mix of the social, political and economic evolution and revolution. In addition to that wood also mentions on the changes that were experienced in the colonial economy and in the population as well as the localized and particular events that played a critical role in leading to American independence (Wood, 2002)
Also in the book the writer describes on the intellectual as well as the social changes that grew from and shaped the revolution. To achieve this Wood elaborates on the unique American perspective as it regards to liberty and its growth out of English country opposition as opposed to what he terms as the corruption of the court. Wood argues that Americans during this time and era were pushing a more radical agenda in the name of defending the rights of Englishmen. For instance Americans were driven by the fear fro the powerful monarchial executive into advocating for what many saw as radical reforms in the country at the time. Some of these radical reforms included the following the greater suffrage, greater freedom of press, the populist and the egalitarian perspective (Wood, 2002) As the tension with the English men escalated it snowballed into a life of its own as the opposition point of view acted as the lens through which colonist looked at the world and led to the republican view of the world. Consequently the adoption of such view resulted to huge social consequences fortunately it failed to lead to social break down. Generally I his book wood portray the events prior to American independence as been conservative yet at same time describe the revolution as been radical.
Moreover, wood discusses the political balancing was became very important especially in times after American revolution and author specifically outlines on the role that the weaknesses of the articles of confederation as well as the consequences that resulted from the social changes as it regards to the way people got motivated prompting them to adjust their ways of governance. Wood also mentions that after the people realized that they had gone to far as it pertains to removal and limiting of the executive power and by leaning that the legislature can as well be despotic, they then started to update their constitution. Resulting from their actions, the executives and the independent judiciaries started to be perceived as balancing run always legislatures as opposed to being seen as tyrannical deposits.
In his book American Revolution wood also does an appreciative discussion pertaining to the debates that surrounded the constitutional convention that was called to help in reformation of the colonial government and ménages to locate the America unique point of view that American government had arisen from the federalist anti-federalist debates. In his discussion he outlines the way federalism helped in changing the understanding of sovereignty as people located sovereignty in the people as opposed to locating it in any particular government institution.
In concluding this book analysis of the American Revolution by wood, it’s evident that American Revolution occurred in phases that resulted to several consequences that serve to changes both in the social, economic and political realms. Generally, the change led to changes regarding the way Americans perceived their government and their relationships to it with the repercussions that has persisted until this day.