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American Character

Nonfiction: History / Politics & Current Events / Social Sci
Unabridged   10 hour(s)
Publication date: 03/15/2016

American Character

A History of the Epic Struggle Between Individual Liberty and the Common Good

Available from major retailers or BUY FROM AMAZON
Audio CD ISBN:9781681680347
Digital Download ISBN:9781681680354


The author of American Nations examines the history of and solutions to the key American question: how best to reconcile individual liberty with the maintenance of a free society.

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Product Description

The struggle between individual rights and the good of the community has been the basis of nearly every major disagreement in our history, from the debates at the Constitutional Convention to the fights surrounding the agendas of the Federalists, the Progressives, and the Tea Party. In American Character, Colin Woodard traces these key strands in American politics through the four centuries of the nation’s existence, and how different regions of the country have successfully or disastrously accommodated them.

Woodard argues that maintaining a liberal democracy requires finding a balance between protecting individual liberty and nurturing a free society. Going to either libertarian or collectivist extremes results in tyranny. But where does the "sweet spot" lie in the United States, a federation of disparate regional cultures that have always strongly disagreed on these issues? Woodard leads readers on a riveting and revealing journey through four centuries of struggle, experimentation, successes and failures to provide an answer.


"Narrator Jonathan Yen's deep, friendly voice makes this discussion of our nation's values both accessible and lively." —AudioFile

"This fascinating overview ends with an optimistic forecast for a more harmonious and fairer future with a clouded crystal ball, at least for the next four years." —Sound Commentary

Author Bio

Colin Woodard is currently the state and national affairs writer at the Portland Press Herald and Maine Sunday Telegram. His work has appeared in dozens of publications, including The Economist, Smithsonian, The Washington Post, and Politico. Colin is a graduate of Tufts University and the University of Chicago.