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One Nation Under Gold

Nonfiction: History
Unabridged   14.5 hour(s)
Publication date: 06/13/2017

One Nation Under Gold

How One Precious Metal Has Dominated the American Imagination for Four Centuries

Available from major retailers or BUY FROM AMAZON
Audio CD ISBN:9781681686653
Digital Download ISBN:9781681686660


In One Nation Under Gold, acclaimed author James Ledbetter traces the origins of our national obsession with gold and expertly explores the controversies around this hallowed metal.

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Product Description

Worshiped by Tea Party politicians but loathed by sane economists, gold has influenced American monetary policy and has exerted an irrational influence on the national psyche for centuries. It is an existential quest that extends to today, as millions of investors remain entranced by the metal, and as right-wing presidential candidates present it as the antidote to our economic woes. Acclaimed author James Ledbetter traces the origins of our national obsession, revealing how gold's sacred status dates from precolonial days when conquistadors fanatically searched the New World for the gilded city of El Dorado. From William Jennings Bryan's legendary Cross of Gold speech of 1896, to FDR's ban on private gold ownership, to Nixon's 1971 decision to float the dollar and detach it from gold, Ledbetter's "really superb treatment" (Julian Zelizer) expertly explores the controversies around this hallowed metal, investigating for the first time what our centuries-long fixation ultimately reveals about the American identity.


"Jonathan Yen's narration carries a bit of that fever, sharing the excitement of gold seekers in California as well as the fervor of political discussion."—AudioFile

"As much a study of the American psyche as it is the history of a precious metal in America, One Nation Under Gold is highly recommended for both personal and public library audiobook collections." —Midwest Book Review

“A solid look at America’s golden history.” —Publishers Weekly

“Ledbetter has a knack for finding the most interesting, if sometimes-obscure, pleas for gold, many offered by government officials. . . . An absorbing and often entertaining look at precious metal and its place—or lack thereof—in our wallets.” —Kirkus Reviews

“Everyone is familiar with gold but few know of its complex history―until now, thanks to James Ledbetter’s skillful storytelling.” —Joseph E. Stiglitz, Nobel Prize–winning economist and best-selling author of The Great Divide

“What an original, imaginative book! Bristling with ideas, this lucid history reveals the economic, cultural, and political dimensions of gold’s role in the American experience. So doing, it illuminates, informs, and provokes.” —Ira Katznelson, author of the Bancroft Prize–winning Fear Itself

Author Bio

James Ledbetter is the editor of Inc. magazine and the author or editor of five previous books. His writing on business and politics has appeared in the New Yorker, the Nation, the New York Times, and many other publications.