Jeffersonian Legacies

Author: Peter S. Onuf
Publisher: University of Virginia Press
ISBN: 0813914639
Release Date: 1993
Genre: Biography & Autobiography

On the occasion of Thomas Jefferson's 250th birthday, a number of today's leading historicans take a fresh look at our third president, architect of democracy for his time and still for ours. Jeffersonian Legacies reconstructs the worlds Thomas Jefferson created for himself and envisioned for his countrymen. The authors consider Jefferson's career as a slave owner, his ambiguous and controversial testimony on the institution of slavery, and his significance for the civil rights movement and contemporary race relations. Jeffersonian Legacies provides the next generation of students, scholars, and citizens a better understanding not only of Jefferson in his own world but also his influence in the shaping of ours.

The Mind of Thomas Jefferson

Author: Peter S. Onuf
Publisher: University of Virginia Press
ISBN: 9780813934235
Release Date: 2012-10-05
Genre: History

In The Mind of Thomas Jefferson, one of the foremost historians of Jefferson and his time, Peter S. Onuf, offers a collection of essays that seeks to historicize one of our nation’s founding fathers. Challenging current attempts to appropriate Jefferson to serve all manner of contemporary political agendas, Onuf argues that historians must look at Jefferson’s language and life within the context of his own place and time. In this effort to restore Jefferson to his own world, Onuf reconnects that world to ours, providing a fresh look at the distinction between private and public aspects of his character that Jefferson himself took such pains to cultivate. Breaking through Jefferson’s alleged opacity as a person by collapsing the contemporary interpretive frameworks often used to diagnose his psychological and moral states, Onuf raises new questions about what was on Jefferson’s mind as he looked toward an uncertain future. Particularly striking is his argument that Jefferson’s character as a moralist is nowhere more evident, ironically, than in his engagement with the institution of slavery. At once reinvigorating the tension between past and present and offering a new way to view our connection to one of our nation’s founders, The Mind of Thomas Jefferson helps redefine both Jefferson and his time and American nationhood.

Thomas Jefferson and Sally Hemings

Author: Annette Gordon-Reed
Publisher: University of Virginia Press
ISBN: 9780813933566
Release Date: 1998-03-29
Genre: History

When Annette Gordon-Reed's groundbreaking study was first published, rumors of Thomas Jefferson's sexual involvement with his slave Sally Hemings had circulated for two centuries. Among all aspects of Jefferson's renowned life, it was perhaps the most hotly contested topic. The publication of Thomas Jefferson and Sally Hemings intensified this debate by identifying glaring inconsistencies in many noted scholars' evaluations of the existing evidence. In this study, Gordon-Reed assembles a fascinating and convincing argument: not that the alleged thirty-eight-year liaison necessarily took place but rather that the evidence for its taking place has been denied a fair hearing. Friends of Jefferson sought to debunk the Hemings story as early as 1800, and most subsequent historians and biographers followed suit, finding the affair unthinkable based upon their view of Jefferson's life, character, and beliefs. Gordon-Reed responds to these critics by pointing out numerous errors and prejudices in their writings, ranging from inaccurate citations, to impossible time lines, to virtual exclusions of evidence—especially evidence concerning the Hemings family. She demonstrates how these scholars may have been misguided by their own biases and may even have tailored evidence to serve and preserve their opinions of Jefferson. This updated edition of the book also includes an afterword in which the author comments on the DNA study that provided further evidence of a Jefferson and Hemings liaison.00 Possessing both a layperson's unfettered curiosity and a lawyer's logical mind, Annette Gordon-Reed writes with a style and compassion that are irresistible. Each chapter revolves around a key figure in the Hemings drama, and the resulting portraits are engrossing and very personal. Gordon-Reed also brings a keen intuitive sense of the psychological complexities of human relationships—relationships that, in the real world, often develop regardless of status or race. The most compelling element of all, however, is her extensive and careful research, which often allows the evidence to speak for itself. Thomas Jefferson and Sally Hemings: An American Controversy is the definitive look at a centuries-old question that should fascinate general readers and historians alike.

Placing the South

Author: Michael O'Brien
Publisher: Univ. Press of Mississippi
ISBN: 1578069343
Release Date: 2007
Genre: History

Placing the South offers a selection of work published between 1985 and 2005 by one of the most incisive historians and literary critics of the South. The pieces seek to situate the South in a variety of contexts and offer a compelling defense of what Kwame Anthony Appiah has called "rooted cosmopolitanism." This is a mode of understanding based on respect for what is local and an awareness that regionalism is not enough. Hybridity, in both culture and literature, is inescapable and desirable. The first section of the book ("Placing") contains three comparative analyses that look at how regionalism has recently been conceptualized globally, how the modern South has acquired pertinence for those outside the United States, and how the relationship between Britain and the South has worked. The second section ("Ideologies") scrutinizes political ideas--freedom, imperialism, nationalism, racial ideology--which have transformed American discourse. The third section ("Forms") examines genre and how the South has been constructed and reconstructed by such literary forms as autobiography, biography, history, and literary history. The final section ("Writers") contains critical appreciations of political thinkers, novelists, poets, critics, historians, and sociologists important to southern intellectual life. Taken together, the essays offer a robust analysis of a dynamic region. Michael O'Brien is professor of American intellectual history at University of Cambridge and a fellow at Jesus College. He is the author of Conjectures of Order: Intellectual Life and the American South, 1810-1860 and other books.

Sally Hemings Thomas Jefferson

Author: Jan Lewis
Publisher: University of Virginia Press
ISBN: 0813919193
Release Date: 1999
Genre: History

The publication of DNA test results showing that Thomas Jefferson was probably the father of one of his slave Sally Hemings's children has sparked a broad but often superficial debate. The editors of this volume have assembled some of the most distinguished American historians, including three Pulitzer Prize winners, and other experts on Jefferson, his times, race, and slavery. Their essays reflect the deeper questions the relationship between Hemings and Jefferson has raised about American history and national culture. The DNA tests would not have been conducted had there not already been strong historical evidence for the possibility of a relationship. As historians from Winthrop D. Jordan to Annette Gordon-Reed have argued, much more is at stake in this liaison than the mere question of paternity: historians must ask themselves if they are prepared to accept the full implications of our complicated racial history, a history powerfully shaped by the institution of slavery and by sex across the color line. How, for example, does it change our understanding of American history to place Thomas Jefferson in his social context as a plantation owner who fathered white and black families both? What happens when we shift our focus from Jefferson and his white family to Sally Hemings and her children? How do we understand interracial sexual relationships in the early republic and in our own time? Can a renewed exploration of the contradiction between Jefferson's life as a slaveholder and his libertarian views yield a clearer understanding of the great political principles he articulated so eloquently and that Americans cherish? Are there moral or political lessons to be learned from the lives of Thomas Jefferson and Sally Hemings and the way that historians and the public have attempted to explain their liaison? Sally Hemings and Thomas Jefferson: History, Memory, and Civic Culture promises an open-ended discussion on the living legacy of slavery and race relations in our national culture.

A Companion to Thomas Jefferson

Author: Francis D. Cogliano
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons
ISBN: 9781444344615
Release Date: 2011-09-15
Genre: History

A Companion to Thomas Jefferson presents a state-of-the-art assessment and overview of the life and legacy of Thomas Jefferson through a collection of essays grounded in the latest scholarship. Features essays by the leading scholars in the field, including Pulitzer Prize winners Annette Gordon-Reed and Jack Rakove Includes a section that considers Jefferson’s legacy Explores Jefferson’s wide range of interests and expertise, and covers his public career, private life, his views on democracy, and his writings Written to be accessible for the non-specialist as well as Jefferson scholars

Jefferson s Empire

Author: Peter S. Onuf
Publisher: University of Virginia Press
ISBN: 0813922046
Release Date: 2000
Genre: Biography & Autobiography

Thomas Jefferson believed that the American revolution was atransformative moment in the history of political civilization. He hoped that hisown efforts as a founding statesman and theorist would help construct a progressiveand enlightened order for the new American nation that would be a model andinspiration for the world. Peter S. Onuf's new book traces Jefferson's vision of theAmerican future to its roots in his idealized notions of nationhood and empire.Onuf's unsettling recognition that Jefferson's famed egalitarianism was elaboratedin an imperial context yields strikingly original interpretations of our nationalidentity and our ideas of race, of westward expansion and the Civil War, and ofAmerican global dominance in the twentiethcentury. Jefferson's vision of an American "empirefor liberty" was modeled on a British prototype. But as a consensual union ofself-governing republics without a metropolis, Jefferson's American empire would befree of exploitation by a corrupt imperial ruling class. It would avoid the cycle ofwar and destruction that had characterized the European balance ofpower. The Civil War cast in high relief thetragic limitations of Jefferson's political vision. After the Union victory, as thereconstructed nation-state developed into a world power, dreams of the United Statesas an ever-expanding empire of peacefully coexisting states quickly faded frommemory. Yet even as the antebellum federal union disintegrated, a Jeffersoniannationalism, proudly conscious of America's historic revolution against imperialdomination, grew up in its place. In Onuf's view, Jefferson's quest to define a new American identity also shaped his ambivalentconceptions of slavery and Native American rights. His revolutionary fervor led himto see Indians as "merciless savages" who ravaged the frontiers at the Britishking's direction, but when those frontiers were pacified, a more benevolentJefferson encouraged these same Indians to embrace republican values. AfricanAmerican slaves, by contrast, constituted an unassimilable captive nation, unjustlywrenched from its African homeland. His great panacea: colonization. Jefferson's ideas about race revealthe limitations of his conception of American nationhood. Yet, as Onuf strikinglydocuments, Jefferson's vision of a republican empire--a regime of peace, prosperity, and union without coercion--continues to define and expand the boundaries ofAmerican national identity.

Martha Jefferson Randolph Daughter of Monticello

Author: Cynthia A. Kierner
Publisher: Univ of North Carolina Press
ISBN: 9780807882504
Release Date: 2012-05-14
Genre: Biography & Autobiography

As the oldest and favorite daughter of Thomas Jefferson, Martha "Patsy" Jefferson Randolph (1772-1836) was extremely well educated, traveled in the circles of presidents and aristocrats, and was known on two continents for her particular grace and sincerity. Yet, as mistress of a large household, she was not spared the tedium, frustration, and great sorrow that most women of her time faced. Though Patsy's name is familiar because of her famous father, Cynthia Kierner is the first historian to place Patsy at the center of her own story, taking readers into the largely ignored private spaces of the founding era. Randolph's life story reveals the privileges and limits of celebrity and shows that women were able to venture beyond their domestic roles in surprising ways. Following her mother's death, Patsy lived in Paris with her father and later served as hostess at the President's House and at Monticello. Her marriage to Thomas Mann Randolph, a member of Congress and governor of Virginia, was often troubled. She and her eleven children lived mostly at Monticello, greeting famous guests and debating issues ranging from a woman's place to slavery, religion, and democracy. And later, after her family's financial ruin, Patsy became a fixture in Washington society during Andrew Jackson's presidency. In this extraordinary biography, Kierner offers a unique look at American history from the perspective of this intelligent, tactfully assertive woman.

Thomas Jefferson and the Wall of Separation Between Church and State

Author: Daniel Dreisbach
Publisher: NYU Press
ISBN: 9780814720844
Release Date: 2002-09-01
Genre: Law

No phrase in American letters has had a more profound influence on church-state law, policy, and discourse than Thomas Jefferson’s “wall of separation between church and state,” and few metaphors have provoked more passionate debate. Introduced in an 1802 letter to the Danbury, Connecticut Baptist Association, Jefferson’s “wall” is accepted by many Americans as a concise description of the U.S. Constitution’s church-state arrangement and conceived as a virtual rule of constitutional law. Despite the enormous influence of the “wall” metaphor, almost no scholarship has investigated the text of the Danbury letter, the context in which it was written, or Jefferson’s understanding of his famous phrase. Thomas Jefferson and the Wall of Separation Between Church and State offers an in-depth examination of the origins, controversial uses, and competing interpretations of this powerful metaphor in law and public policy.

Thomas Jefferson

Author: R. B. Bernstein
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 9780195181302
Release Date: 2005-09-15
Genre: Biography & Autobiography

A short biography of Thomas Jefferson covers such topics as his life as a Virginia gentleman, his passionate belief in democracy, his defense of slavery, his relationship with Sally Hemings, and his contributions to America as a writer, inventor, and party leader.

Ploughshares Into Swords

Author: James Sidbury
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 0521598605
Release Date: 1997-10-13
Genre: History

James Sidbury's Ploughshares into Swords places the enslaved population of Virginia squarely within the emerging Atlantic world culture--of the market economy, of urban culture, of Virginia's rapidly changing religious culture. Sidbury stresses the way black Virginians appropriated white cultural forms, transformed their meaning, and in the process created symbols of black liberation and a culture that had autonomous features even though it drew from the larger culture. His skillfull interweaving of these two separate strands of argument provides rare insights into the entire process of identity formation and creolization.

Religious Freedom

Author: John Ragosta
Publisher: University of Virginia Press
ISBN: 9780813933719
Release Date: 2013-04-22
Genre: Law

For over one hundred years, Thomas Jefferson and his Statute for Establishing Religious Freedom have stood at the center of our understanding of religious liberty and the First Amendment. Jefferson’s expansive vision—including his insistence that political freedom and free thought would be at risk if we did not keep government out of the church and church out of government—enjoyed a near consensus of support at the Supreme Court and among historians, until Justice William Rehnquist called reliance on Jefferson "demonstrably incorrect." Since then, Rehnquist’s call has been taken up by a bevy of jurists and academics anxious to encourage renewed government involvement with religion. In Religious Freedom: Jefferson’s Legacy, America’s Creed, the historian and lawyer John Ragosta offers a vigorous defense of Jefferson’s advocacy for a strict separation of church and state. Beginning with a close look at Jefferson’s own religious evolution, Ragosta shows that deep religious beliefs were at the heart of Jefferson’s views on religious freedom. Basing his analysis on that Jeffersonian vision, Ragosta redefines our understanding of how and why the First Amendment was adopted. He shows how the amendment’s focus on maintaining the authority of states to regulate religious freedom demonstrates that a very strict restriction on federal action was intended. Ultimately revealing that the great sage demanded a firm separation of church and state but never sought a wholly secular public square, Ragosta provides a new perspective on Jefferson, the First Amendment, and religious liberty within the United States.

Those who Labor for My Happiness

Author: Lucia C. Stanton
Publisher: University of Virginia Press
ISBN: 9780813932231
Release Date: 2012
Genre: History

Our perception of life at Monticello has changed dramatically over the past quarter century. The image of an estate presided over by a benevolent Thomas Jefferson has given way to a more complex view of Monticello as a working plantation, the success of which was made possible by the work of slaves. At the center of this transition has been the work of Lucia "Cinder" Stanton, recognized as the leading interpreter of Jefferson’s life as a planter and master and of the lives of his slaves and their descendants. This volume represents the first attempt to pull together Stanton’s most important writings on slavery at Monticello and beyond. Stanton’s pioneering work deepened our understanding of Jefferson without demonizing him. But perhaps even more important is the light her writings have shed on the lives of the slaves at Monticello. Her detailed reconstruction for modern readers of slaves’ lives vividly reveals their active roles in the creation of Monticello and a dynamic community previously unimagined. The essays collected here address a rich variety of topics, from family histories (including the Hemingses) to the temporary slave community at Jefferson’s White House to stories of former slaves’ lives after Monticello. Each piece is characterized by Stanton’s deep knowledge of her subject and by her determination to do justice to both Jefferson and his slaves. Published in association with the Thomas Jefferson Foundation.

The Jefferson Bible

Author: Thomas Jefferson
Publisher: Courier Corporation
ISBN: 9780486112510
Release Date: 2012-03-02
Genre: Religion

Jefferson regarded Jesus as a moral guide rather than a divinity. In his unique interpretation of the Bible, he highlights Christ's ethical teachings, discarding the scriptures' supernatural elements, to reflect the deist view of religion.

Thomas Jefferson and the politics of nature

Author: Thomas S. Engeman
Publisher: Univ of Notre Dame Pr
ISBN: UOM:39015050709289
Release Date: 2000
Genre: Biography & Autobiography

With the equality and liberty of the Declaration of Independence as his fighting words, Thomas Jefferson created American democracy. For the two hundred years since then, he has been studied and debated worldwide, but never more intensely than in recent years. His extensive and influential understanding of democracy's foundation in reason and nature continue to make him one of the most examined American founders. Thomas Jefferson and the Politics of Nature is a collection of the very best current scholarship devoted to Thomas Jefferson as politician, writer, philosopher, Christian, and economist.Lead essayist Michael Zuckert presents his comprehensive interpretation of Jefferson's political thought, which Zuckert considers the best theoretical approach to democracy. While Zuckert moderates Jefferson's natural rights philosophy with a Kantian perspective, Jean Yarbrough responds with the argument that Jefferson incorporates the authors of the Scottish Enlightenment and principles from the Republican tradition to achieve the same moderating effect.Garrett Ward Sheldon looks at the broader cultural influences shaping Jefferson's thought and traces his republicanism to his support of Christian ethics and Aristotle. R. Booth Fowler examines why Jefferson, the leading liberal theorist of the nineteenth century, became the hero of the very different liberalism of the twentieth. Robert Dawidoff considers Jefferson as writer and literary figure instead of political thinker and actor, while Joyce Appleby renews an appreciation of Jefferson's statecraft by a famous reexamination of his commercial agrarian policy. Finally, James Ceaser traces Jefferson's belief in racial inferiority to aspeculative new natural science prominent among contemporary European thinkers and argues that Jefferson committed a significant error in reducing politics to such conjectural "facts."This compact text is ideal for professors