National Identity and the Agrarian Republic
The Transatlantic Commerce of Ideas between America and France (1750–1830)
With a few exceptions, historiography has paid little attention to the impact of French economic thought during the American Revolution, focusing instead on the Revolution’s links with Britain. This book outlines how, from the mid-eighteenth to the early-nineteenth century, the political and social dimension of French economic thought, and particularly of Physiocracy, spurred American Republicans to a radical shaping of American agrarian ideology. Such a perspective allows for a reconsideration of several questions that lie at the heart of contemporary historiographic debate: the connection between politics and economics; the meaning of republicanism; the foundations of representation; the role of Europe in the Atlantic world; and the interaction between national histories and global context. In particular, the research methodology adopted here makes it possible to reconstruct how American national identity, conceived as an expression of society in economic terms, emerged through a cosmopolitan way of thinking focused on the uniqueness of the new state.
Table of Contents
Introduction; Chapter 1 What is an American? St John de Crèvecoeur Between Agrarian Myth and National Identity; Chapter 2 Republicanism and Agrarian Democracy; Chapter 3 The Cosmopolitan Vocation of the Agrarian Model; Chapter 4 The Farmer as Common Man; Chapter 5 The Agrarian Ideology Between Economic Theory and Political Struggle; Chapter 6 Channels for Disseminating the Economic Culture; Chapter 7 The English Jacobins; Chapter 8 A Long Eighteenth Century; Chapter 101 Conclusion;
Manuela Albertone is Professor of Early Modern History in the Department of Historical Studies, University of Turin, Italy. Her works focus on eighteenth-century French and American history, and the relationship between politics and economics. She is particularly interested in the economic origins of political representation.
’Il mosaico di concezioni filosofiche, politiche ed economiche in cui si inquadra la battaglia di Jefferson viene puntualmente ricostruito da Manuela Albertone, una delle piÃ¹ prestigiose studiose dell’UniversitÃ di Torino, che da molti anni si dedica a quella complessa Â«storia atlanticaÂ» che guarda all’intreccio del Nuovo e del Vecchio mondo ... mi pare rilevante notare come questa sia stata pubblicata direttamente in inglese presso l’autorevole collana di storia economica e sociale dell’etÃ moderna dell’editore anglo-americano Ashgate. A dimostrazione che il Â«commercio delle ideeÂ» (per usare il sottotitolo del volume) tra vecchia Europa e giovane America continua tutt’oggi.’ Corriere della Sera [’The mosaic of philosophical, political and economic notions in which Jefferson’s battle is framed is carefully reconstructed by Manuela Albertone, one of the leading scholars of the University of Turin, who for many years has devoted her research to the complex "Atlantic history" that looks at the interweaving of the New and Old World ... It seems relevant to note that this book was published directly in English by the authoritative Anglo-American publisher Ashgate, in their Modern Economic and Social History Series. Proof that the "commerce of ideas" (to use the subtitle of the volume) between old Europe and young America still continues today.’] Corriere della Sera ’This is a valuable assessment of the impact of French economic thought in the USA for a period in which work usually focuses on British influence.’ European Review of History