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Brief Analysis Of "The Birth Of The Republic" 3rd Edition. Essay On What Is Morgan's Thesis.

963 words - 4 pages

Edmund S. Morgan's "The Birth of the Republic" is an excellent overview of the major points of the history of America throughout the revolutionary period.To briefly summarize the book; Morgan first begins by examining the relationship between the American colonies and the English Parliament. He focuses mainly on the unfair taxation that was forced upon the colonies by the English and other infringements of liberties committed by Parliament. The colonies "admitted Parliament's right to use duties, from which an incidental revenue might arise... but denied the right to levy duties for the purpose of revenue"(36). Morgan develops on the increasingly unpleasant relations between the two (backing up his claims, such as the one quoted above, with reference to some influential writers from that time such as Dulany and Dickinson), and ties it directly with the declaration of independence.Morgan refrains from discussing military issues in depth and sticks to mainly the political aspects of the revolution and how ideas and principles developed. He only devotes a few pages to the war, but that is it.Morgan describes the problems (along with the achievements and benefits) of the Articles of Confederation very effectively. He discusses how the problems were recognized and how the framers set out to discuss and revise the articles, eventually leading up to the creation of a completely new federal Constitution which formed the basis of a new national government.Along the way, Morgan brings up important issues during those times such as slavery and property quite frequently, and manages to adequately rationalize the motives of the framers relative to the former and the latter.Morgan ends his telling of the American tale with the ratification of the Constitution and leaves the reader with some words that provoke thought.Morgan's thesis throughout the book is clear: that the Framers operated on principle as they were building the framework of the new nation, and that their determination (and that of the colonists, of course) turned into the pursuit of the equality of all men.From the start, as Morgan discusses the problems between the English Parliament and the American colonies, he begins to work towards proving his thesis with his constant barrage of the underlying meanings with every legislative transaction discussed. He gives the reader a wonderful sense of what the ideas and motives were from both sides. This seems to be the part of his book that is most intensely argued and described; hence it is the part of the book which most strongly supports his thesis. He conditions the reader to begin to understand that the eventual creation of the government of America was the direct cause of the people's wanting of liberty, and that a sort of idealistic attitude was behind that want.The word "principle" is the key word of Morgan's thesis. As previously mentioned, the foundation of the government that...

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