American Nations: A History of the Eleven Rival Regional Cultures of North America

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Penguin, Sep 29, 2011 - History - 384 pages
13 Reviews
An illuminating history of North America's eleven rival cultural regions that explodes the red state-blue state myth.

North America was settled by people with distinct religious, political, and ethnographic characteristics, creating regional cultures that have been at odds with one another ever since. Subsequent immigrants didn't confront or assimilate into an “American” or “Canadian” culture, but rather into one of the eleven distinct regional ones that spread over the continent each staking out mutually exclusive territory.

In American Nations, Colin Woodard leads us on a journey through the history of our fractured continent, and the rivalries and alliances between its component nations, which conform to neither state nor international boundaries. He illustrates and explains why “American” values vary sharply from one region to another. Woodard (author of American Character: A History of the Epic Struggle Between Individual Liberty and the Common Good)  reveals how intranational differences have played a pivotal role at every point in the continent's history, from the American Revolution and the Civil War to the tumultuous sixties and the "blue county/red county" maps of recent presidential elections. American Nations is a revolutionary and revelatory take on America's myriad identities and how the conflicts between them have shaped our past and are molding our future.




From the Hardcover edition.
 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Vicki_Weisfeld - LibraryThing

By Colin Woodard – This 2011 book—a pick of my book club—is a thought-provoking analysis of the different cultural strains, mostly organized along geographic lines, that make up what author Sarah ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - bohannon - LibraryThing

I finished this over the summer of 2015, and it has quickly become the second book* I recommend to anyone wishing to have a better structural understanding of the US. The author takes an approach more ... Read full review

Contents

Title Page Copyright Page Dedication Introduction
PART ONE ORIGINS 1590 to 1769
Founding El Norte
Founding New France
Founding Tidewater
Founding Yankeedom
Founding New Netherland
The Colonies First Revolt
The Midlands Spread West
Appalachia Spreads West
The Deep South Spreads West
Conquering El Norte
Founding the Left Coast
War for the West
PART FOUR CULTURE WARS 1878 to 2010
Founding the Far West

Founding the Deep South
Founding the Midlands
Founding Greater Appalachia
PART TWO UNLIKELY ALLIES 1770 to 1815
A Common Struggle
Six Wars of Liberation
Independence or Revolution?
Nations in the North
First Secessionists
PART THREE WARS FOR THE WEST 1816 to 1877
CHAPTER 15Yankeedom Spreads West
Immigration and Identity
Gods and Missions
Culture Clash
War Empire and the Military
The Blue Nations
The Red and the Purple
Epilogue
Acknowledgements NOTES
INDEX
Copyright

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About the author (2011)

Colin Woodard is a Maine native and the author of Ocean’s End: Travels Through Endangered Seas. He is a regular contributor to the Christian Science Monitor and the San Francisco Chronicle.


From the Trade Paperback edition.

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