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A PEOPLE’S HISTORY OF THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION by Ray Raphael

A PEOPLE’S HISTORY OF THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION

How Common People Shaped the Fight for Independence

By Ray Raphael

Pub Date: April 1st, 2001
ISBN: 1-56584-653-2
Publisher: New Press

A fresh and compelling history, bringing together the voices of the rebel leaders, the men and boys who made up the core of the Continental Army, the women of the colonies, the Tory loyalists and Quaker pacifists who opposed the war, the American Indians (who stood to gain little by anyone’s victory), and the African-Americans (who had almost as little to gain—although slaves belonging to rebels were promised freedom if they took up arms for the British). Although Raphael has done excellent work compiling these accounts, problems of organization—the sections are divided along broad social, ethnic, and gender lines that make it hard to see the larger picture of the war itself—can make for difficult reading. That said, the voices that Raphael calls upon—such as New England soldier Joseph Martin, the half-Indian Alexander McGillivray, or young housewife Sarah Hodgkins—offer an often remarkable perspective on a familiar part of American history.

An unusual look at the nation’s founding.