Barack Obama's politics are deeply informed by his profound knowledge and understanding of his country's history. His articles, books, and speeches are replete with references to America's past and how that relates to the present he sees and the future he envisions.
Exploring Obama's own words, Steven Sarson examines his interpretation of American history from colonial times to the present, showing how Obama sees American history as beginning with the “common creed” of equality and liberty proclaimed in the Declaration of Independence and the “more perfect union” created by the Constitution. He analyses Obama's understanding of the colonies, revolution, and early nation, slavery and the civil war, segregation and civil rights, economy and society, Native Americans and foreign policy. An epilogue explores how Obama personifies the American dream through the stories of individuals, including his own.
A unique and fascinating take on the past and how we interpret it, this book will appeal to all students and scholars of American history, as well as anyone interested in Obama's presidency.
Steven Sarson is Professor of American Civilisation at Jean Moulin University, France. He is the author of The Tobacco-Plantation South and the Early American Atlantic World (2013); British America: Creating Colonies, Imagining an Empire (2015) and numerous articles, and is the co-editor of The American Colonies and the British Empire (2011).
Introduction: The landscape of our collective dreams
Prologue: A More Perfect Union: Barack Obama's American History
1 Our starting point as Americans: The American Colonies
2 Our common creed: The Declaration of Independence & the American Revolution
3 The foundation of our government: The Constitution & the New Nation
4 A new birth of freedom: Slavery & the Civil War
5 We Shall Overcome: Reconstruction, Jim Crow, & Civil Rights
6 The chief business of the American people: Property & Liberty
7 Beyond Our Borders: Native Americans & other Foreign Affairs
Epilogue:.Out of Many, One: American History's Barack Obama