An award-winning historian recounts the history of American liberty through the stories of 13 essential documents
Nationalism is inevitable: It supplies feelings of belonging, identity, and recognition. It binds us to our neighbors and tells us who we are. But increasingly - from the United States to India, from Russia to Burma - nationalism is being invoked for unworthy ends: to disdain minorities or to support despots. As a result, nationalism has become to many a dirty word.
In Give Me Liberty, award-winning historian and biographer Richard Brookhiser offers up a truer and more inspiring story of American nationalism as it has evolved over 400 years. He examines America's history through 13 documents that made the United States a new country in a new world: a free country. We are what we are because of them; we stay true to what we are by staying true to them.
Americans have always sought liberty, asked for it, fought for it; every victory has been the fulfillment of old hopes and promises. This is our nationalism, and we should be proud of it.
"In our deeply divided America, Richard Brookhiser goes back in search of our roots, and finds them in that many-headed idea called 'liberty'. In his signature style, he wastes no words, defies the conventional political categories, and invites us to join him in recovering a series of inspirational moments when we all felt the same future in our hearts and minds. (Joseph J. Ellis, author of American Dialogue: The Founders and Us)
"Brookhiser grounds his spirited argument for American exceptionalism in the idea of liberty.... An engaging history of admirable episodes from America's past." (Kirkus)
"With his characteristic combination of elegance and shrewdness, Richard Brookhiser gives us another insightful account of what makes us the nation we are. Give Me Liberty is intellectual history at its riveting best." (H.W. Brands, author of Heirs of the Founders and Dreams of El Dorado)