Review: "The Radicalism Of The American Revolution

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Gordon Wood’s The Radicalism of the American Revolution provided an interesting and insightful view into the changes that were wrought by the struggle to create a republic on North American soil. Wood’s central thesis was that the political reform movement ushered in by the Revolution caused a deep social revolution, which changed the nature of American society and had a powerful impact on everything that the United States has undertaken throughout its entire existence. According to Wood, the Revolution caused America to run through several different phases of development, moving from the social organization of a monarchical society to that of a republican society and finally ending up as a democratic society that ultimately distressed many of the Revolution’s leaders. Wood claimed that the political reorganization in America changed how citizens viewed one another and had a subtle, but deep and profound change on their social relationships. Further, the American Revolution was a radical movement that changed the world in a way that shook it to its foundations by challenging the concept of aristocracy in the Western World that had existed for two thousand years and completely changed the political and social landscape in the United States and the world forever. Wood certainly supported the case that the Revolution changed how Americans felt that their social interactions ought to be carried out. Wood provided a great deal of research to indicate how the bonds of society would be reforged in the aftermath of the Revolution. The American Revolution changed the nature of American society in a very deep way. Old monarchical social bonds had not simply been destroyed; they had been replaced with new Republican bonds of “love and gratitude.” Before the Revolution, George Washington called the nation’s yeoman farmers “the grazing multitude,” expressing his
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