Ackerman, Bruce. 2005. The Failure of the Founding Fathers: Jefferson, Marshall, and the Rise of Presidential Democracy. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
If anyone claims to you that we are, or have recently been, in uniquely polarized times, then you should send that person off to read a book about the election of 1800, such as this one. It will, I expect, make you feel better about the present day; certainly it had that effect on me. I had no idea about many of the political shenanigans that went on - or were considered, as in the case of calling out the Virginia milita to march on Washington DC - during the crisis, which resulted in part from the failure of the founders to lay out how to deal with tie votes in the electoral college.
Ackerman is a political science professor at Yale and a good writer too. He has some valuable broader points to make about the historical development of the presidency and of the supremes. I very much enjoyed and learned from the book.
Recommended if you are into such things.
Amazon book page
Barnes and Noble book page
Bricks-and-mortar used bookstore where I actually bought the book
Who was my favorite student this term?
6 years ago
Post a Comment