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History and Political Science


The Virtues of Mendacity

On Lying in Politics


Martin Jay

When Michael Dukakis accused George H. W. Bush of being the "Joe Isuzu of American Politics" during the 1988 presidential campaign, he asserted in a particularly American tenor the near-ancient idea that lying and politics (and perhaps advertising, too) are inseparable, or at least intertwined. Our... More


The Constitution before the Judgment Seat

The Prehistory and Ratification of the American Constitution, 1787–1791


Jürgen Heideking. Edited by John P. Kaminski and Richard Leffler

Originally published in German in 1988, the late Jürgen Heideking's exhaustive study of the debates over the ratification of the U.S. Constitution compares the methods used to call state ratifying conventions and explores everything that made up the ratification debate, from town meetings and... More


"Those Who Labor for My Happiness"

Slavery at Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello


Lucia Stanton

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... More


Faith and Race in American Political Life



Edited by Robin Dale Jacobson and Nancy D. Wadsworth

Drawing on scholarship from an array of disciplines, this volume provides a deep and timely look at the intertwining of race and religion in American politics. The contributors apply the methods of intersectionality, but where this approach has typically considered race, class, and gender, the... More


Light and Liberty

Thomas Jefferson and the Power of Knowledge


edited by Robert M. S. McDonald

Although Thomas Jefferson’s status as a champion of education is widely known, the essays in Light and Liberty make clear that his efforts to enlighten fellow citizens reflected not only a love of learning but also a love of freedom. Using as a starting point Jefferson's conviction that knowledge... More


The Struggle for Equality

Essays on Sectional Conflict, the Civil War, and the Long Reconstruction


Edited by Orville Vernon Burton, Jerald Podair, and Jennifer L. Weber

This collection of essays, organized around the theme of the struggle for equality in the United States during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, also serves to honor the renowned Civil War historian James McPherson. Complete with a brief interview with the celebrated scholar, this volume... More


The Educational Legacy of Woodrow Wilson

From College to Nation


Edited by James Axtell

In The Educational Legacy of Woodrow Wilson, James Axtell brings together essays by eight leading historians and one historically minded political scientist to examine the long, formative academic phase of Wilson’s career and its connection to his relatively brief tenure in politics. Together, the... More


Jordan's Point, Virginia

Archaeology in Perspective, Prehistoric to Modern Times


Martha W. McCartney

Jordan’s Point, a nearly triangular promontory in the James River, is situated in Prince George County, just east of the confluence of the James and Appomattox Rivers. A broad terrace overlooking the James, Jordan’s Point is bounded by small streams, tidal marshes, and protective uplands that rise... More


Thomas Jefferson, Time, and History



Hannah Spahn

Beginning with the famous opening to the Declaration of Independence ("When in the course of human events..."), almost all of Thomas Jefferson’s writings include creative, stylistically and philosophically complex references to time and history. Although best known for his "forward-looking"... More


Unfinished Revolution

The Early American Republic in a British World


Sam W. Haynes

After the War of 1812 the United States remained a cultural and economic satellite of the world’s most powerful empire. Though political independence had been won, John Bull intruded upon virtually every aspect of public life, from politics to economic development to literature to the performing... More


My March to Liberation

A Jewish Boy's Story of Partizan Warfare


Paul A. Strassmann

My March to Liberation: A Jewish Boy’s Story of Partizan Warfare is the compelling saga of a young Jewish boy coming of age during World War II. Paul Strassmann was fifteen when his family’s life in Trenčín, Slovakia, was turned upside down by the war. His memoir tells one man’s story of what it... More


America on the Eve of the Civil War



edited by Edward L. Ayers and Carolyn R. Martin

"This remarkable publication provides a captivating and brilliantly executed series of conversations among seventeen most impressive historians. These participants in a daylong conference focusing on the extraordinary years leading to the Civil War provide an incredible range of historical... More


The Nation's Nature

How Continental Presumptions Gave Rise to the United States of America


James D. Drake

In one of Common Sense’s most ringing phrases, Thomas Paine declared it "absurd" for "a continent to be perpetually governed by an island." Such powerful words, coupled with powerful ideas, helped spur the United States to independence.In The Nation's Nature, James D. Drake examines how a... More


Essays from the Edge

Parerga and Paralipomena


Martin Jay

Over his distinguished career as a European intellectual historian and cultural critic, Martin Jay has explored a variety of major themes: the Frankfurt School, the exile of German intellectuals in America during the Nazi era, Western Marxism, the denigration of vision in twentieth-century French... More


The Enemy Within

Fears of Corruption in the Civil War North


Michael Thomas Smith

Stoked by a series of major scandals, popular fears of corruption in the Civil War North provide a unique window into Northern culture in the Civil War era. In The Enemy Within, Michael Thomas Smith relates these scandals—including those involving John C. Frémont’s administration in Missouri,... More


Shaping the Body Politic

Art and Political Formation in Early America


edited by Maurie D. McInnis and Louis P. Nelson

Traditional narratives imply that art in early America was severely limited in scope. By contrast, these essays collectively argue that visual arts played a critical role in shaping an early American understanding of the body politic. American artists in the late colonial and early national periods... More


The Papers of James Madison
Secretary of State Series, vol. 9
1 February-30 June 1805


James Madison. Edited by Mary A. Hackett, J. C. A. Stagg, Anne Mandeville Colony, Mary Parke Johnson, and Katharine E. Harbury

During the five months covered in this volume, James Madison attended Jefferson’s second inauguration, continued staffing territorial governments for the Orleans and Louisiana Territories, and observed growing factionalism among Republicans as Federalism waned. Abroad, the shifting of alliances... More


The Diaries of Gouverneur Morris

European Travels, 1794–1798


Gouverneur Morris. Edited by Melanie Randolph Miller

In October 1794, Gouverneur Morris, Jefferson’s successor as American minister to France, left Paris forever. A friend of George Washington and a major contributor to the American Constitution, Morris had witnessed the igniting of the French Revolution, the fall of the old regime, and the plunge... More


The Papers of George Washington
Presidential Series, vol. 16
1 May-30 September 1794


George Washington. Edited by David R. Hoth and Carol S. Ebel

During the spring and summer of 1794, Washington and his cabinet faced concerns that arose from the ongoing war in Europe. Embargo evasions, activities of French and British privateers, and the formation of a league of armed neutrality by Denmark and Sweden required appropriate administrative... More


Remaking Custom

Law and Identity in the Early American Republic


Ellen Holmes Pearson

History has largely forgotten the writings, both public and private, of early nineteenth-century America’s legal scholars. However, Ellen Holmes Pearson argues that the observers from this era had a unique perspective on the young nation and the directions in which its legal culture might go.... More


The Madisons at Montpelier

Reflections on the Founding Couple


Ralph Ketcham

Restored to its original splendor, Montpelier is now a national shrine, but before Montpelier became a place of study and tribute, it was a home. Often kept from it by the business of the young nation, James and Dolley Madison could finally take up permanent residence when they retired from... More


From Jamestown to Jefferson

The Evolution of Religious Freedom in Virginia


Edited by Paul Rasor and Richard E. Bond

From Jamestown to Jefferson sheds new light on the contexts surrounding Thomas Jefferson’s Statute for Religious Freedom—and on the emergence of the American understanding of religious freedom—by examining its deep roots in colonial Virginia’s remarkable religious diversity. Challenging... More


Civil War Sites in Virginia

A Tour Guide


James I. Robertson, Jr., and Brian Steel Wills

Since 1982, the renowned Civil War historian James I. "Bud" Robertson’s Civil War Sites in Virginia: A Tour Guide has enlightened and informed Civil War enthusiasts and scholars alike. The book expertly explores the commonwealth’s Civil War sites for those hoping to gain greater insight and... More


Historic Sites in Virginia's Northern Neck and Essex County

A Guide


Edited by Thomas A. Wolf

Historic Sites in Virginia's Northern Neck and Essex County is an indispensible guide for those who have an active or potential interest in the rich history of the Northern Neck region of Virginia and its historic sites. This six-county Tidewater region includes the birthplaces of George... More


Alexis de Tocqueville and Gustave de Beaumont in America

Their Friendship and Their Travels


Alexis de Tocqueville. Edited by Olivier Zunz. Translated by Arthur Goldhammer

Alexis de Tocqueville, a young aristocrat of twenty-five, worried deeply about the future of France as well as his own fate in his native country, which had just experienced its second revolution in less than fifty years. Along with Gustave de Beaumont, a fellow magistrate, Tocqueville conceived... More


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