Radicalism: Gordon S. Wood And The American Revolution

Improved Essays
Gordon S. Wood is an eminent historian who got his masters and Ph.D. degrees from Harvard University in 1959 and 1964 respectively. He is a professor of History Emeritus at Brown University and also an Alva O. Way University Professor (Brown Affiliations). Wood has worked wholeheartedly towards combining the everchanging social and political ideas and how they are currently being projected from the early American Republic. The theme of his writing is mostly guided by the idea that the revolution was the most radical incident in the American History (Dallek, Matthew). The writing of Wood reflects his beliefs that the revolution played a tremendous part in defining the future of American politics based on egalitarian principals. He believes that the woman right movement, antislavery movements and the destruction of aristocracy is inspired by the ideology of American revolution (Dallek, Matthew). …show more content…
The strength of the complete work of Wood is the result of extreme carefulness, tremendous research, and high standards that are uniquely set by himself (Fischer, David Hackett). Through teaching and writing, Wood is keeping alive the prominence and deep respect for the early period of the American revolution in the new generation.
The book Revolutionary Characters: What made the founders different is also a true representation of his beliefs that the American Revolution is the most significant part of American History and how significant its role has been. This book is a collection of articles, reviews, and essays which have previously been published by different authors. Wood tried to combine all of them in a way that the introduction and the conclusion of the book convincingly convey his

Related Documents

  • Improved Essays

    The American Revolution helped shape the desires, the expectation and demand of the American patriots that forced the creation of true representative national government by some basis that were ideological and philosophical. These creations were sought up by men who were independent, logically and intellectually sound. The American Revolution is the ideological and philosophical of what we know today. These include The Enlightenment, Common Sense, the second Continental Congress and The Declaration of Independence. The Enlightenment was the intellectual activity that started in Europe and spread into the colonies.…

    • 962 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Superior Essays

    Michael Works The American Revolution America has gone through many different types of revolutions such as the Revolutionary War and Civil War. When thinking of revolution, modernization comes to mind. The modernization of America was the biggest factor in determining how America would turn out in the future. America is not the most stable country, but from its past and different obstacles, it has been able to bounce back from nearly every problem, no matter what the circumstance. The Boston Tea Party, The Boston Massacre, the Treaty of Paris, and the Declaration of Independence all contribute to the different reasons why America is the country it is today.…

    • 2234 Words
    • 9 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Thomas Paine was a deeply involved person during the American Revolution with his ideas of the poor and the rich. Now the real arguable question is, what is this Thomas Paine’s real reason to write this book? Paine argues that the interests of the monarch and his people are united, and insists that the French Revolution should be understood as one which attacks the despotic principles of the French monarchy, not the king himself, and he takes the Bastille to symbolise the despotism that had been overthrown. According to Enotes, “Paine’s central point is that the French Revolution emerged from reason rather than force, and that reason has guided the principles of the new…

    • 995 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Great Essays

    Locke is credited, among many others, for causing the beginning of the American Revolution. Thomas Paine, an important person in the Revolution, studied John Locke more than any other philosopher. At the time, the colonies of America were being oppressed and taxed by King George, and the colonists want that to change. Once Thomas Paine read Locke’s stance on overthrowing tyranny, he wrote the pamphlet “Common Sense”, which was the match that started the flame which is the American Revolution (“John Locke on History.com” 3). Along with his influence in the creation of America, Locke’s ideas have changed England…

    • 1480 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Great Essays
  • Superior Essays

    The American Revolution: A Revolution or a Revelation? The American Revolution was a stepping stone towards the formation of then United States. As with most revolutions, it began with an idea and ultimately progressed into something of a far greater magnitude. Crane Brinton, an American historian and author of Anatomy of Revolution, created a model that outlined what he believed a revolution should entail. The American Revolution somewhat follows these aforementioned “guidelines” that Brinton remarked on, which ultimately led to the United States separating from Great Britain to become an independent country.…

    • 2272 Words
    • 10 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Improved Essays

    The history of colonial America and the colonists’ erudite actions to gain their independence from Britain has served as a microcosm in history to display how the American Revolution was crucial and influenced several movements around the world such as the French Revolution. Some might even argue that the French Revolution also inspired European revolutionary movements and the Russian Revolution around the 1940s. The thirteen colonies altered the way they were being run and developed a unique form of a democratic government after colonists saw interference by the British as denial and restriction of their simple rights that other British subjects possessed without any limitations. The entire world was in awe after witnessing the thirteen colonies…

    • 1004 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Superior Essays

    Overall, I thought that this book was quite interesting. For a background on the author, Gordon S. Wood is a professor and Historian at Brown University for his rare skills for synthesizing American history. He dedicates his career to shifting the ideas of the social and political developments that had defined the early American Republic. Within one of his prominent works “The Radicalism of the American Revolution”, Wood explains how the American Revolution produced a quite radical and unique nation. It was more than just a fight for independence from the imposing hierarchy, but it was to transform the society to one that is separate from the government, and that all men are created equal.…

    • 1158 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Thomas Paine published a book titled Common Sense in 1776 in which he accused the British of the detrimental effect they imposed on Americans. John Locke implanted the idea that people should control life, liberty, and land. This all contributed to the separation of America and Great Britain. In conclusion, the wars that led to the British occupation in America, the unfair taxes imposed on the colonists, Parliament’s control causing colonists to rebel all factored into the rift in the relationship between the American colonists and the British. Benjamin Franklin imposed the idea that revolutions are created because in history people always find a way to revolve over one thing or another.…

    • 713 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Also that even if class conflict and radical goals may not have caused the Revolution; the Revolution had a profound, even radical, ideological impact on society nevertheless. A book that demonstrated how society and culture were transformed. He also gave other perspectives on events that leads the colonial to side with independence as a conservative yet radical revolution. To further support his arguments, Wood uses revolutions that involve with radicalism to emphasize that that the American Revolution were not conservatives, based on the transformation of social change both in the colonies and Britain, but were as radical and revolutionary as any in history. Also continues with talks about the condition of the revolutions, talks about the patriots vs. courtiers, the dependency of slavery, inheritance, and…

    • 778 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Rhetoric was one tool the American used to project their resentment towards Britain and their fear of anticipated tyranny against their principles. The developed American society, propaganda based on real fears, along with the Virginia Gentry example, display Wood’s belief there was a link between American social issues and Revolutionary ideas that lead to the American Revolution. Gordon S. Wood endorses American exceptionalism at the time of the revolution. This is shown with his favorable vocabulary when describing the qualities of Americans at the time of the revolution. “The Revolution had taken place not in a succession of eruptions that had crumbled the existing social structure, but in a succession of new thoughts and new ideas that had vindicated that social structure (Wood 6).…

    • 767 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays