Lafayette in the Somewhat United States

Lafayette in the Somewhat United States

Author: Sarah Vowell

Publisher:

Published: 2015

Total Pages: 290

ISBN-13: 1594631743

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From the bestselling author of Assassination Vacation and Unfamiliar Fishes, a humorous and insightful account of the Revolutionary War hero Marquis de Lafayette - the one Frenchman we could all agree on - and an insightful portrait of a nation's idealism and its reality.


Lafayette in the Somewhat United States

Lafayette in the Somewhat United States

Author: Sarah Vowell

Publisher: Penguin

Published: 2016-10-04

Total Pages: 290

ISBN-13: 0399573100

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From the bestselling author of Assassination Vacation and The Partly Cloudy Patriot, an insightful and unconventional account of George Washington’s trusted officer and friend, that swashbuckling teenage French aristocrat the Marquis de Lafayette. Chronicling General Lafayette’s years in Washington’s army, Vowell reflects on the ideals of the American Revolution versus the reality of the Revolutionary War. Riding shotgun with Lafayette, Vowell swerves from the high-minded debates of Independence Hall to the frozen wasteland of Valley Forge, from bloody battlefields to the Palace of Versailles, bumping into John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, Lord Cornwallis, Benjamin Franklin, Marie Antoinette and various kings, Quakers and redcoats along the way. Drawn to the patriots’ war out of a lust for glory, Enlightenment ideas and the traditional French hatred for the British, young Lafayette crossed the Atlantic expecting to join forces with an undivided people, encountering instead fault lines between the Continental Congress and the Continental Army, rebel and loyalist inhabitants, and a conspiracy to fire George Washington, the one man holding together the rickety, seemingly doomed patriot cause. While Vowell’s yarn is full of the bickering and infighting that marks the American past—and present—her telling of the Revolution is just as much a story of friendship: between Washington and Lafayette, between the Americans and their French allies and, most of all between Lafayette and the American people. Coinciding with one of the most contentious presidential elections in American history, Vowell lingers over the elderly Lafayette’s sentimental return tour of America in 1824, when three fourths of the population of New York City turned out to welcome him ashore. As a Frenchman and the last surviving general of the Continental Army, Lafayette belonged to neither North nor South, to no political party or faction. He was a walking, talking reminder of the sacrifices and bravery of the revolutionary generation and what the founders hoped this country could be. His return was not just a reunion with his beloved Americans it was a reunion for Americans with their own astonishing, singular past. Vowell’s narrative look at our somewhat united states is humorous, irreverent and wholly original.


Assassination Vacation

Assassination Vacation

Author: Sarah Vowell

Publisher: Simon and Schuster

Published: 2005-04-04

Total Pages: 273

ISBN-13: 0743282531

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New York Times bestselling author of The Wordy Shipmates and contributor to NPR’s This American Life Sarah Vowell embarks on a road trip to sites of political violence, from Washington DC to Alaska, to better understand our nation’s ever-evolving political system and history. Sarah Vowell exposes the glorious conundrums of American history and culture with wit, probity, and an irreverent sense of humor. With Assassination Vacation, she takes us on a road trip like no other—a journey to the pit stops of American political murder and through the myriad ways they have been used for fun and profit, for political and cultural advantage. From Buffalo to Alaska, Washington to the Dry Tortugas, Vowell visits locations immortalized and influenced by the spilling of politically important blood, reporting as she goes with her trademark blend of wisecracking humor, remarkable honesty, and thought-provoking criticism. We learn about the jinx that was Robert Todd Lincoln (present at the assassinations of Presidents Lincoln, Garfield, and McKinley) and witness the politicking that went into the making of the Lincoln Memorial. The resulting narrative is much more than an entertaining and informative travelogue—it is the disturbing and fascinating story of how American death has been manipulated by popular culture, including literature, architecture, sculpture, and—the author’s favorite—historical tourism. Though the themes of loss and violence are explored and we make detours to see how the Republican Party became the Republican Party, there are all kinds of lighter diversions along the way into the lives of the three presidents and their assassins, including mummies, show tunes, mean-spirited totem poles, and a nineteenth-century biblical sex cult.


Unfamiliar Fishes

Unfamiliar Fishes

Author: Sarah Vowell

Publisher: Riverhead Books

Published: 2012-03-06

Total Pages: 258

ISBN-13: 159448564X

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From the bestselling author of "The Wordy Shipmates" comes an examination of Hawaii's emblematic and exceptional history, retracing the impact of New England missionaries who began arriving in the early 1800s to remake the island paradise into a version of New England.


Lafayette

Lafayette

Author: Harlow Giles Unger

Publisher: Turner Publishing Company

Published: 2007-08-03

Total Pages: 433

ISBN-13: 0470243562

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Acclaim for Lafayette "I found Mr. Unger's book exceptionally well done. It's an admirable account of the marquis's two revolutions-one might even say his two lives-the French and the American. It also captures the private Lafayette and his remarkable wife, Adrienne, in often moving detail." -Thomas Fleming, author, Liberty!: The American Revolution "Harlow Unger's Lafayette is a remarkable and dramatic account of a life as fully lived as it is possible to imagine, that of Gilbert de Motier, marquis de Lafayette. To American readers Unger's biography will provide a stark reminder of just how near run a thing was our War of Independence and the degree to which our forefathers' victory hinged on the help of our French allies, marshalled for George Washington by his 'adopted' son, Lafayette. But even more absorbing and much less well known to the general reader will be Unger's account of Lafayette's idealistic but naive efforts to plant the fruits of the American democracy he so admired in the unreceptive soil of his homeland. His inspired oratory produced not the constitutional democracy he sought but the bloody Jacobin excesses of the French Revolution."-Larry Collins, coauthor, Is Paris Burning? and O Jerusalem! "A lively and entertaining portrait of one of the most important supporting actors in the two revolutions that transformed the modern world."-Susan Dunn, author, Sister Revolutions: French Lightning, American Light "Harlow Unger has cornered the market on muses to emerge as America's most readable historian. His new biography of the marquis de Lafayette combines a thoroughgoing account of the age of revolution, a probing psychological study of a complex man, and a literary style that goes down like cream. A worthy successor to his splendid biography of Noah Webster."-Florence King, Contributing Editor, National Review "Enlightening! The picture of Lafayette's life is a window to eighteenth- and nineteenth-century history."-Michel Aubert La Fayette


The Partly Cloudy Patriot

The Partly Cloudy Patriot

Author: Sarah Vowell

Publisher: Simon and Schuster

Published: 2003-10

Total Pages: 228

ISBN-13: 0743243803

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The author shares her perspective on such topics as the 2000 election, present-day civil rights activists, and the relationship between the United States and Canada.


The Wordy Shipmates

The Wordy Shipmates

Author: Sarah Vowell

Publisher: Penguin

Published: 2009-10-06

Total Pages: 274

ISBN-13: 1594484007

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In this New York Times bestseller, the author of Lafayette in the Somewhat United States "brings the [Puritan] era wickedly to life" (Washington Post). To this day, America views itself as a Puritan nation, but Sarah Vowell investigates what that means-and what it should mean. What she discovers is something far different from what their uptight shoebuckles- and-corn reputation might suggest-a highly literate, deeply principled, and surprisingly feisty people, whose story is filled with pamphlet feuds, witty courtroom dramas, and bloody vengeance. Vowell takes us from the modern-day reenactment of an Indian massacre to the Mohegan Sun casino, from old-timey Puritan poetry, where "righteousness" is rhymed with "wilderness," to a Mayflower-themed waterslide. Throughout, The Wordy Shipmates is rich in historical fact, humorous insight, and social commentary by one of America's most celebrated voices.


The Marquis

The Marquis

Author: Laura Auricchio

Publisher: Vintage

Published: 2015-08-18

Total Pages: 450

ISBN-13: 0307387453

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Winner of the 2015 American Library in Paris Book Award The Marquis de Lafayette at age nineteen volunteered to fight under George Washington and became the French hero of the American Revolution. In this major biography Laura Auricchio looks past the storybook hero and selfless champion of righteous causes who cast aside family and fortune to advance the transcendent aims of liberty and fully reveals a man driven by dreams of glory only to be felled by tragic, human weaknesses. Drawing on substantial new research conducted in libraries, archives, museums, and private homes in France and the United States, Auricchio, gives us history on a grand scale revealing the man and his complex life, while challenging and exploring the complicated myths that have surrounded his name for more than two centuries


Lafayette

Lafayette

Author: Olivier Bernier

Publisher: New Word City

Published: 2017-10-24

Total Pages: 770

ISBN-13: 1640191003

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Historian Olivier Bernier draws an indelible portrait of the man who represented, more than anyone else, the idea of French nobility to all Americans of the early Republic and who represented to the French the idea of freedom and its American expression. Lafayette was, indeed, the hero of two worlds. Bernier's Lafayette - much of it based on previously inaccessible documents - is a man who lived the liberal ideal as few others have. In the war for American independence, this twenty-year-old was a stubborn, tenacious, and ultimately victorious commander, the favorite of George Washington with whom he developed a unique father-son relationship. Returning to Paris with yearnings for a liberalized government, he was soon caught up in the 1789 revolution, first as its champion, then as the guardian of the king, finally as the only man capable of maintaining order in 1790 and 1791. Once the king fled the capital, however, Lafayette's position became untenable, and he was forced to escape to Belgium. But there, the right-wing emigres considered him a traitor, and he was arrested and sent to Austria, where he languished in prison for years. Finally, the diplomatic efforts of George Washington and other Americans led to his release and return to France. Now, Napoleon feared him as a potential rival, a fear heightened when Lafayette went into self-imposed exile to protest Napoleon's abuse of power. During the revolution that followed Napoleon's downfall, Lafayette maintained his liberal principles as few others bothered to, and his position was vindicated by the uprising that installed the July monarchy and France's first middle-class constitution. Enriching this chronicle of a man and his age are the stories of young "Gilbert's" many loves, as well as the steadfast relationship with his adoring wife. And never far from the marquis's heart was his love for his adopted home. He maintained it through a forty-year correspondence with the Founding Fathers and an unrelenting, if often quixotic, defense of liberal ideals. For its part, the young American republic knew no grander celebrations than those thrown in honor of his return in 1824.