Saturday, February 12, 2005

RECOMMENDED READING

Nature and Artifice: The Life and Thought of Thomas Hodgskin, 1787-1869 (Suffolk: The Boydell Press, 1998. 247 pp.) by David Stack. This is a brilliant intellectual and personal biography of Hodgskin. It covers not only his ideas from his time in the British Navy and his studies at Edinburgh University through his days helping to found the London Mechanics Institute and his time with the Economist, but the important distinctions of the sources of English radicalism of the period. Stack has some great material on the philosophical radicals.

Land Reform and Working Class Experience in Britain and the United States, 1800-1862 (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1999. 372 pp.) by Jamie L. Bronstein. I don't know of any work which does a better job of covering the anglo-american land reform movements, the major figures (including my favorite, the great libertarian George Henry Evans) and ideas framed by the various English and American groups on land reform, and the strong interrelationships between the figures on both sides of the atlantic.

Transatlantic Radicals and the Early American Republic (Lawrence, Kansas: The University Press of Kansas, 1997. 425pp.) by Michael Durey. Like Fischer's Albion's Seed Transatlantic Radicals... is a powerful tracing of the waves of èmigrés to the reality of the "asylum and elysium" of the American shores. He traces English, Scottish and Irish radicals from their activities in their mother countries, to their escape from the repression of their movements, and their influence in the newly-formed United States. The intellectual leadership of Thomas Paine for several generations of the "transatlantic community of radicals" and their efforts in support of their annointed political leader, Thomas Jefferson, is analyzed in full, including their concerns over American slavery.

The Radical Rhetoric of the English Deists: The Discourse of Skepticism, 1680-1750 by James H. Herrick (Columbia: University of South Carolina, 1997. 245 pp.). I never thought I would find a work that is a better treatment of deism than can be found in J.M. Robertson's classic books. I was wrong. Herrick very neatly provides a careful analysis of the methods of the deist attacks on religion and the clergy, the Christian apologists' defense of religion, the Bible, the historical Jesus, and their persecution and legal prosecution against the deists. In large part, the deists won this battle for free expression and freedom of thought. It is a never ending war against authority and many lessons can be learned from such a study.

1 Comments:

Blogger Admin said...

Great blog, keep up the good work. Glad to see sites like this.

Here is another good site I said I would pass along.
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Thanks

3:54 AM  

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