A People’s Army: Response Paper
The book, A People’s Army, by Fred Anderson is a historical insight on the lives of the Massachusetts colonists during the Seven Years War. This book is different than most historical books because instead of giving a regimented military history of the battles in the war, Anderson chooses to explore the social characteristics of the war. This includes the lives of the soldiers that fought, their families, and the communities of people in the surrounding towns that were affected by the war. Anderson goes into detail in multiple sections of his book that focus on the context of the war, the real-life experiences of the battles, and the reasons why the colonists and British fought this war. I would agree that the author completely captures all of these elements in his book. He is able to utilize primary sources and documents from the time period as written evidence to support his statements.
Anderson can capitalize on explaining the experiences of all the men that fought in this war. Many soldiers kept journals of their military experience and day-to-day lives which Anderson includes throughout this book. Through the eyes of the colonists who experienced the Seven Years War, the war is seen as the only way to become equally respected members of the British Empire. The professional British army that fought beside the colonists had very different beliefs on war than the colonists did. It is fascinating to see the difference between how an inexperienced group of colonists and a professional British army delegate their battle tactics. A good example of this concept is when Anderson retells the experiences of individuals in a specific battle and their remembrances. When it is all put together, the full picture can be painted in the reader’s mind of what the war was actually like and the relationships among the soldiers fighting 1. The conflicts endured between the British and the colonists caused...