Scholar of the Early Republic Wins American History Book Award

Alan Taylor, author of “American Republics: A Continental History of the United States, 1783-1850,” has been named the winner of the New-History Association’s 2022 Barbara and David Zalaznick Book Prize. York, awarded annually for the best work on American history or biography.

The book, published by WW Norton, takes an extensive look at the period between the end of the American Revolution and the failed attempts of Congress to pass compromise bills on slavery. rules to prevent the outbreak of the Civil War. It looks beyond familiar greats and geographical boundaries, describing the expanding country as an “always arrogant” nation built on “an unstable foundation of rival regions and an ambiguous Constitution”.

David S. Reynolds, review the book Last year, in The New York Times Book Review, praised it as an “enlarged overview” that deeply conveys the internal divisions and hatreds that still reverberate today.

“Many histories of this pivotal period have been written, but none have emphasized the fragility of the American experiment as strongly as Taylor’s,” he wrote.

Taylor, a professor at the University of Virginia, is a two-time Pulitzer Prize winner for history. His two earlier books, “Colonial America” ​​and “Revolutions in America”, have a similar wide angle and a nuanced view of the nation’s beginnings, have been scholarly gems in the political war escalates through American history.

His job could be short on sunny paeans for the wisdom of the founders. But in an interview Speaking to The Times last year, Taylor said that in his classroom lectures, he always tries to reconnect with the founders’ belief that democracy is a living organism, if not held by citizens. participate in continuous protection, will “disappear”.

“The founders were very clear about that,” he said. “We have a much less clear understanding.”

The prize for the book, which will be presented at a private ceremony in April, comes with a $50,000 prize pool. Previous winners have included Jill Lepore, Jane KamenskyEric Foner and Gordon S. Wood. Scholar of the Early Republic Wins American History Book Award

Fry Electronics Team

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