The Oxford History of the United States is by far the most respected multi-volume history of our nation. In this Pulitzer prize-winning, critically acclaimed addition to the series, historian Daniel Walker Howe illuminates the period from the battle of New Orleans to the end of the Mexican-American War, an era when the United States expanded to the Pacific and won control over the richest part of the North American continent.
A panoramic narrative, What Hath God Wrought portrays revolutionary improvements in transportation and communications that accelerated the extension of the American empire. Railroads, canals, newspapers, and the telegraph dramatically lowered travel times and spurred the spread of information. These innovations prompted the emergence of mass political parties and stimulated America's economic development from an overwhelmingly rural country to a diversified economy in which commerce and industry took their place alongside agriculture. In his story, the author weaves together political and military events with social, economic, and cultural history. Howe examines the rise of Andrew Jackson and his Democratic party, but contends that John Quincy Adams and other Whigs--advocates of public education and economic integration, defenders of the rights of Indians, women, and African-Americans--were the true prophets of America's future. In addition, Howe reveals the power of religion to shape many aspects of American life during this period, including slavery and antislavery, women's rights and other reform movements, politics, education, and literature. Howe's story of American expansion culminates in the bitterly controversial but brilliantly executed war waged against Mexico to gain California and Texas for the United States.
Winner of the New-York Historical Society American History Book Prize
Finalist, 2007 National Book Critics Circle Award for Nonfiction
The Oxford History of the United States The Oxford History of the United States is the most respected multi-volume history of our nation. The series includes three Pulitzer Prize winners, a New York Times bestseller, and winners of the Bancroft and Parkman Prizes. The Atlantic Monthly has praised it as "the most distinguished series in American historical scholarship," a series that "synthesizes a generation's worth of historical inquiry and knowledge into one literally state-of-the-art book." Conceived under the general editorship of C. Vann Woodward and Richard Hofstadter, and now under the editorship of David M. Kennedy, this renowned series blends social, political, economic, cultural, diplomatic, and military history into coherent and vividly written narrative.
Daniel Walker Howe
Howe, Daniel Walker
Oxford University Press
Oxford University Press
Oxford University Press
Oxford University Press
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
What Hath God Wrought, the latest entry into the marvelous series, The Oxford History of the United States, by Daniel Walker Howe, is another major score for readers and historians alike. It is well a thought out, broad in scope, interesting in concept and a very readable narrative of the United States from the end of the War of 1812 (1815) to the end of the Mexican American War (1848). Howe's subtitle, "The Transformation of America" is proven in an interdisciplinary way throughout its pages. Perhaps the editor, David M. Kennedy, puts it best, "Like Tocqueville's (Democracy in America), his deepest subject in not simply politics - though the pages that follow do full justice to the tumultuous and consequential politics of the era - but the entire array of economic, technological, social, cultural, and even psychological developments that were beginning to shape a distinctively American national identity. Howe brings to bear an impressive command of modern scholarship to explicate...
The decades following the War of 1812 witnessed some of the most dramatic developments in our nation's history. In that time, the United States underwent political, economic, and social transformations that profoundly reshaped the country, taking it from its post-colonial beginnings and setting it on the road towards its dynamic emergence in the world. Daniel Walker Howe's book is a narrative of these years and the changes that took place, as well as what those changes meant to the future of the country.
Though Howe examines nearly every aspect of the period, politics dominate his coverage, which is understandable given his background as a political historian. The figure of Andrew Jackson looms large in these pages, yet Howe rejects any characterization of the era as "Jacksonian", arguing that the phrase glosses over his controversial and divisive nature. This controversy is reflected well within his account, as Howe is highly critical of Jackson (something that is...
As other reviewers have mentioned, the book is necessarily heavy on political history, though this book is not the tale of the rise and fall of political parties or politicians. Instead, Howe has chosen to evaluate American society largely through a political lens - in fact, he has chosen six major actors to play leading roles in his story: Andrew Jackson, J.Q. Adams, Henry Clay, James K. Polk, John Calhoun, & Daniel Webster.
Although he focuses largely on the achievements (or, in some cases the failures) of these men, he does not ignore society as a whole, nor does he ignore military endeavors, such as the Mexican War and the participants in that conflict.
All told, this is an excellent synthesis of the period. Professor Howe has demonstrated an extraordinary command of the secondary literature of the period, while incorporating many works of recent scholarship (especially the last 10 years). I was very impressed as I read the book with Howe's skillful...
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