Andrew Jackson towered over American life during the second quarter of the nineteenth century, so much so that the period has been dubbed the Jacksonian era. With the passionate support of most voters and their families, he broke through the protocols of the Founding generation, defying constitutional and international norms in the name of the "sovereign people." And yet Jackson's career was no less about limiting that sovereignty, imposing one kind of law over Americans so that they could inflict his sort of "justice" on non-Americans. Jackson made his name along the Carolina and Tennessee frontiers by representing merchants and creditors and serving governors and judges. At times that meant ejecting white squatters from native lands and returning blacks slaves to native planters. Jackson performed such duties in the name of federal authority and the "law of nations." Yet he also survived an undeclared war with Cherokee and Creek fighters between 1792 and 1794, raging at the Washington administration's failure to "avenge the blood" of white colonists who sometimes leaned towards the Spanish Empire rather than the United States. Even under the friendlier presidency of Thomas Jefferson, Jackson chafed at the terms of national loyalty. During the long war in the south and west from 1811 to 1818 he repeatedly brushed aside state and federal restraints on organized violence, citing his deeper obligations to the people's safety within a terrifying world of hostile empires, lurking warriors, and rebellious slaves. By 1819 white Americans knew him as their "great avenger." Drawing from recent literatures on Jackson and the early republic and also from new archival sources, Avenging the People portrays him as a peculiar kind of nationalist for a particular form of nation, a grim and principled man whose grim principles made Americans fearsome in some respects and helpless in others.
Avenging the People Review
- June 18, 2017Casey WheelerI received a free Kindle copy of Avenging the People: Andrew Jackson, The Rule of Law and the American Nation by J. M. Opal courtesy of Net Galley and Oxford University Press, the publisher. It was with the understanding that I would post a review to Net Galley, Goodreads, Amazon, Barnes and Noble and my history book review blog. I also posted it to my Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Google Plus pages.I requested this book as I have read a great deal about american history and a number of books I received a free Kindle copy of Avenging the People: Andrew Jackson, The Rule of Law and the American Nation by J. M. Opal courtesy of Net Galley and Oxford University Press, the publisher. It was with the understanding that I would post a review to Net Galley, Goodreads, Amazon, Barnes and Noble and my history book review blog. I also posted it to my Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Google Plus pages.I requested this book as I have read a great deal about american history and a number of books about Andrew Jackson. It is the first book by J. M. Opal that I have read.This book is very well researched and presents its subject in great detail. The author's writing style is more than just a dry recitation of the facts, but not as engaging as others. It is not a book for the casual history reader. I found chapter five about General Jackson and his role in the War of 1812 the most interesting.I recommend this book to anyone who is a serious student of american history and Andrew Jackson in particular. You will find it enlightening with more of a focus as to why he acted as he did during his life.more
- May 14, 2017Chris CarsonJackson was a significant departure from the other Founders who served. His hardscrabble life and experiences were reflective of our early American experience. A fair portrait and interpretation of Jackson's development and eventual election as President.more
- June 5, 2017gnarlyhiker"Avenging the People" reads best if this is your first read on the Jacksonian era. All the basic/bases are covered.good luck**ARC/publisher/NetGalley
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