This comprehensive series of 84 lectures features three award-winning historians sharing their insights into this nation's past - from the European settlement and the Revolutionary War through the Civil War, 19th-century industrialization, two world wars, and the present day.
While American history spans not much more than two centuries, it is filled with a wealth of leaders, wars, movements, inventions, and ideas - each of which contributed in its own unique way to America's transformation from 13 disparate colonies on the east coast of North America into a global superpower.
These lectures give you the opportunity to grasp the different aspects of our past that combine to make us distinctly American, and to gain the knowledge so essential to recognizing not only what makes this country such a noteworthy part of world history, but the varying degrees to which it has lived up to its ideals.
The lectures chart the five predominant themes that run throughout the chronicle of U.S. history:
The American passion for freedom-including religious, political, and economic freedom.
The pursuit of education, which has been the quintessential way for Americans to invent (and reinvent) themselves.
The unquestioned faith in the value of popular government.
The willingness of Americans to experiment with and adapt to new environments and situations.
The belief that the United States is a "city on the hill," a country the likes of which the world has never seen before.
Placing familiar historical events in the context of these overarching themes will help you see American history less as a series of separate events and more as a mosaic in which everything is interconnected.
PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your Library section along with the audio.
The History of the United States, 2nd Edition, is by The Great Courses and is a historical audiobook part of their
Modern History series. This book has been narrated by three award-winning leaders in U.S Studies – Professor Allen C. Guelzo, Professor Gary W. Gallagher and Professor Patrick N. Allitt. This all-encompassing study of The United States of America starts at its roots with European settlement to the tremendously powerful nation it is today. This is an essential listen for those attempting to understand its history, culture, people and role in world politics and economies. Available now from Audible.
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It was a riveting overview of American History, with a good balance of political, social, and economic topics. It was so good that I've been listening to it at almost any spare moment when I've been walking, commuting, or cooking.
The lecturers were engaging teachers and the depth was just right for an introductory audio course - not too academic but also not dumbed down. I feel that I have a much better grasp of the broad sweep of American history and can now go on to learn in more depth about particular topics.
I particularly enjoyed the discussion of economic and social topics in the late 19th century as the US expanded westwards and became more industrialised. There were some wonderful lectures on the challenges of western expansion, the consequences of industrialisation, and the attitudes to gender of the time.
I wish the third lecturer had explained why the Democratic and Republican parties seem to have switched ideological places in the mid-twentieth century.
Also, audible should provide the option of buying the PDF guide that comes with Great Courses courses - it would be helpful for reviewing what I've learned.
- Richard Batty
Good introduction, slightly uneven