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Give Me Liberty! Second Edition, Volume 2 (Ebook)

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Concise, clear, compact, Eric Foner's brilliant synthesis of American history is the perfect teaching tool. Unlike so many textbooks that overwhelm beginning students with encyclopedic detail, "Give Me Liberty!" presents the events of American history in a nimble chronological narrative that equips students to understand their significance. It is a textbook that works.


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Concise, clear, compact, Eric Foner's brilliant synthesis of American history is the perfect teaching tool. Unlike so many textbooks that overwhelm beginning students with encyclopedic detail, "Give Me Liberty!" presents the events of American history in a nimble chronological narrative that equips students to understand their significance. It is a textbook that works.

30 review for Give Me Liberty! Second Edition, Volume 2 (Ebook)

  1. 5 out of 5

    T.J.

    Eric Foner's high school/college textbook isn't perfect by any means, but it IS brilliant. Foner's central conceit--the idea that liberty is the cornerstone but rarely agreed upon idea of American history--is brilliant and erudite. Foner skillfully weaves together the idea of American freedom and teh fact that it meant many different things to many different people as it continuously evolved. Foner's biases are readily evident, particularly in his hostility toward political conservatism, but ove Eric Foner's high school/college textbook isn't perfect by any means, but it IS brilliant. Foner's central conceit--the idea that liberty is the cornerstone but rarely agreed upon idea of American history--is brilliant and erudite. Foner skillfully weaves together the idea of American freedom and teh fact that it meant many different things to many different people as it continuously evolved. Foner's biases are readily evident, particularly in his hostility toward political conservatism, but overall, it's an excellent book choice for American history students.

  2. 5 out of 5

    J.

    I cannot believe I am actually done with this. Phew! 980 pages of pure American history and how it relates to freedom and liberty. I would have prefered a dry factual and sequential account, but I am asking for too much. Overall, it is a very well researched and thoroughly edited textbook that encompasses different historical and cultural events and their impact on society.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Krisha

    I learned a lot but I had to reread most of it for it to settle in for quizzes and tests. Also had to take a nap when ever I started reading it.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Seth

    Read it for History 112 at SCCC, decent, but y'know, an American History textbook, so it's a little boring, especially to people like me.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Kendall

    Lincoln said, “Freedom is one thing to the fox and something entirely different to the chickens.” Foner states, “increasingly, the idea of liberty lost its traditional association with privileges derived from membership in a distinct social class and became more and more identified with a general right to resist arbitrary government” (142). The early North American natives had a different meaning of freedom than other early New England settlers. The natives believed that as long as they were not Lincoln said, “Freedom is one thing to the fox and something entirely different to the chickens.” Foner states, “increasingly, the idea of liberty lost its traditional association with privileges derived from membership in a distinct social class and became more and more identified with a general right to resist arbitrary government” (142). The early North American natives had a different meaning of freedom than other early New England settlers. The natives believed that as long as they were not enslaved, they were free. For the early European settlers, freedom was closely aligned with rights, land ownership, slave ownership, and government. The Europeans came to America for economic opportunity, religious tolerance, and land ownership. For example, the early European settlers and the Native Americans had differing opinions on property ownership. The Natives believed in the communal use of property, while the European wanted to own land. The Calvinist settlers identified freedom as religious tolerance and the ability to practice their religion without persecution. Many of the New England colonies were founded for the very purpose of seeking religious freedom, and promoting tolerance. After Roger Williams was banished from Massachusetts in 1636, he went on to create Rhode Island as a land for people to participate in religious activities of their choosing without government interference. William Penn created Pennsylvania for those fleeing religious persecution in Europe. He promoted religious tolerance and co-existence with the Native Americans in the Pennsylvania colony. Abolitionism was a social movement of the pre-Civil war era that advocated for the immediate emancipation of the slaves and their incorporation into American society as equal citizens. Freedom to abolitionists meant freedom from slavery. This view was similar to that of the Native Americans. Abolitionists and Radical Republicans saw emancipation as necessary to weaken the South’s ability to sustain the war. Emancipation became the target of the Union war effort. Freedom of Women’s rights advocates meant equal ability to participate in the public sphere, and gaining the right to vote. Women voiced their opinions at the Seneca Falls Convention organized by Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Lucretia Mott. Former slaves’ ideas of freedom were directly related to land ownership. Many former slaves insisted that through their unpaid labor, they had acquired a right to the land. Freedom as defined by former slaves held a similar meaning to that of white Americans. They equated freedom with self-ownership, family stability, religious liberty, political participation, and economic autonomy. Freedom “was an open-ended process for blacks, involving a transformation of all aspects of their lives and of the society and culture that had sustained slavery in the first place” (Foner 527). No matter what the definition of freedom, for whites it was a given birthright to be defended. Americans envisioned freedom with the availability of open land in the West. John L. O’Sullivan coined the phrase “manifest destiny,” meaning Americans believed it was their divine right to occupy the entire continent and continually expand the area of freedom. “Those who stood in the way of expansion—European powers like Great Britain and Spain, Native Americans, Mexicans—were by definition obstacles to the progress of freedom…Like its predecessors, this generation of Americans believed that the United States had been selected by God for the greatest experiment in human history, the achievement of liberty, and that westward expansion was part and parcel of this destiny” (Foner 323-324). In the older states the population and the price of land were rising. Therefore the chances of a young man setting up a farm or creating his own artisan shop were dwindling. The West held out chances for the achievement of economic independence and freedom. In the nineteenth century freedom was identified with economic opportunities, physical mobility, political participation, and slavery (Foner, 303). Freedom to the Democrats meant a weak central government and the preservation of states’ rights. The Federalists were supporters of Washington’s administration who supported Hamilton’s plan. They had close ties with Britain, did not believe in self-government, and deferred major decisions to authority. They feared too much liberty and unstructured government would result in anarchy.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Sarah

    This book really deserves a 2.5, but I'm being generous. Don't get me wrong; I'm not trying to be harsh. The information was factual and the book got my attention at times. AT TIMES, mind you. It's just, the way this book is set up is painful. I would rather have appendicitis, then have an appendectomy than read this again. Harsh sounding; I know. However, who has time to actually sit and read 40 plus pages of a dull book? Be honest; none of us do. It drags on and on for so long. I had to read th This book really deserves a 2.5, but I'm being generous. Don't get me wrong; I'm not trying to be harsh. The information was factual and the book got my attention at times. AT TIMES, mind you. It's just, the way this book is set up is painful. I would rather have appendicitis, then have an appendectomy than read this again. Harsh sounding; I know. However, who has time to actually sit and read 40 plus pages of a dull book? Be honest; none of us do. It drags on and on for so long. I had to read this for class and it's sad, but it's one of the few textbooks I just hated after the first chapter. Again, it drags on. There may be sections to it where you can take breaks, but I had to read this over the weekend for class Monday. That's on top of the various other errands I had to do (no, errands is not another word for party with friends. I have had next to no social life this semester whatsoever). So it is a killer to read all that. One chapter could have been summed up in a page or two. Conclusion If you're a fan of history, then I probably knocked a book you would enjoy. If you are not a history person or history major, be very wary when this is put on your syllabus as the class textbook. You will probably try to find someone who would be willing to make sparknotes for this thing, but it won't happen. So skim as fast as possible. Bottom line: This thing should have been shorter and I am sure as heck not recommending it. Sorry.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Sophia

    Only giving it two stars for the content, but even that's generous. The facts are there, but the text itself is disorganized, and there's too much "fluff". It's hard to read and take organized notes from, especially when you're limited for time. The author digresses into backstories that really don't do much to support the critical information. Great if you're reading because you're a total history buff and are using this as a bedtime story, but terrible for students. I was given this text for m Only giving it two stars for the content, but even that's generous. The facts are there, but the text itself is disorganized, and there's too much "fluff". It's hard to read and take organized notes from, especially when you're limited for time. The author digresses into backstories that really don't do much to support the critical information. Great if you're reading because you're a total history buff and are using this as a bedtime story, but terrible for students. I was given this text for my AP US History class, and with assignments averaging four chapters a week, I quickly became frustrated. I actually ended up finding pdfs of other textbooks online to help, and read double, because this textbook infuriated me so much. Try American Pageant - also "fluffy", but at least has better organization.

  8. 5 out of 5

    David Lucander

    I don't like this textbook as much as Roark's "The American Promise," but it's a lot more affordable and gets the job done. Foner stretches the themes of what liberty and freedom meant through the ages a little too much for me, but doing so is a teachable tool to make readers think about the lifespan of an idea. Ideologically zealous right wingers really hate Foner, but this textbook doesn't have a very strong political slant to it (maybe the Communism thing comes out more in vol. 2?) and I'm st I don't like this textbook as much as Roark's "The American Promise," but it's a lot more affordable and gets the job done. Foner stretches the themes of what liberty and freedom meant through the ages a little too much for me, but doing so is a teachable tool to make readers think about the lifespan of an idea. Ideologically zealous right wingers really hate Foner, but this textbook doesn't have a very strong political slant to it (maybe the Communism thing comes out more in vol. 2?) and I'm strongly thinking of assigning this book next semester.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Luke O'leary

    I did not enjoy this book. History is one of my favorite subjects and I was looking forward to reading this book. However, I was sadly disappointed to find that this text is difficult to follow along and doesn't provide clarity to the information presented. I do appreciate the chronological presentation of events and certain aspects of the book. But overall, I unfortunately do not recommend the book.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Scooping it Up

    Fabulous middle/early high school history curriculum. Great resources and one of the lesser problematically colonist white/supremacist history texts I've seen.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Lenna • Sugar Dusted Pages

    All finished and graduated :)

  12. 4 out of 5

    Patrick

    Textbook, No Comment.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Mia

    #Finished book 12/2012....Really learned a lot; finished my course w/a 4.0!!! :)

  14. 5 out of 5

    Chase Steely

    "Anti-Capitalist, oh communism and socialism aren't that bad" American History textbook. Borrowed for the class.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Brownshoebrian

    A great reference for American history. The premise is that the whole of American history can be understood as both a quest for freedom and as an attempt to thwart it. Depends on your group.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Alisha

    History class...will be on this one for a while!!!

  17. 5 out of 5

    Claudia

    for my U.S. History course spring 2012. (Civil War-Present)

  18. 5 out of 5

    Kristin Pierce

    Very dry and boring, adequately informative for how many years of history it covers. The organization is very confusing though. Within a single chapter over an era, it bounces back and forth through time and even presidencies, so it's difficult to really grasp the chronological order of events. A lot of slightly more complex events are simply mentioned and skimmed over, and the reader has to do further research to understand them. Potentially interesting events are made dry and the details omitt Very dry and boring, adequately informative for how many years of history it covers. The organization is very confusing though. Within a single chapter over an era, it bounces back and forth through time and even presidencies, so it's difficult to really grasp the chronological order of events. A lot of slightly more complex events are simply mentioned and skimmed over, and the reader has to do further research to understand them. Potentially interesting events are made dry and the details omitted. Not a fun read, but a confusing one that delivers skeletal information that can be used to guide readers to additional works over certain events and eras.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Amanda

    This is a textbook. I like the textbook, but I do not like the subdivisions within each chapter, it made the text choppy and was, I felt, unecessary. As a professor it was not the most user friendly text from which I have taught. I found it too cumbersome for a traditional 16-week course, editing content is required. The textbook does contain very good information not usually found in textbooks, I am just of the opinion it gets lost in the verbosity.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Jamie

    Extremely dry information-and at times it felt it just cut off in the middle of the information. Like it would talk about "a person of importance" during "some date", and then completely trail off to another topic or not even trail off, sometimes it would just start a whole new topic when the one it was just talking about wasn't even fully finished-just had no coherency whatsoever. This book just lacked a sense of flow throughout the chapters.

  21. 5 out of 5

    John

    This was the book for my Early American History class. The 2nd volume (1877-present) is the book for my new class this semester, American History (post-recon) Eric Foner is a good historian, he tries to throw in the public opinion of the times as often as he can. His work is thorough like that of Zinn. The imagery on every other page is appealing too. I would recommend this if you’re looking for a thorough American History read.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Lillian Duarte

    A thorough account of American History going through the Civil War. The book is engaging and interesting, especially for a textbook, and has a valuable online resource. It's definitely great for those who are *very* interested in American history, at over 500 pages... or for those in an AP US History Class.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Brandon Barker

    If you are looking for a historic book that focuses mainly on the lack of freedoms for African Americans, Women and Native Americans, this is the right book. It is comprehensive in showing how freedoms were deprived and then established for all.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Stutor111

    Garbage. I have never read a history textbook that so obviously glossed over factual history in order to imply a narrative and impart an ideology. Professors who assign this text have ulterior motives and will not be teaching history.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Lyn

    I think a person's being politically right means that s/he knows vaguely of American history, but does not know the reasons, details, and progress with it, hence stupid "politically right", and by nature has racism or white superiority in his/er less-educated mind.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Leonardo Popoca

    One of the best if not the best History book I have ever read. It may brief edition but it is jam packed with American history. It gets all the nitty gritty stuff to like indentured servants and religious prosecution. If you want the true American history, this is as close as it gets.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Anna Mcfarland

    Not a fan of this history book. It was confusing, even inaccurate at times and the font chosen for the dates makes the number 3 look like 8.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Jody K

    Second part for History II.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Amanda

    A decent enough textbook, the chapters are verbose and subdivided far too much for my liking. Only okay, not outstanding by any means.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Netanella

    Teaching AP US History with this excellent volume. I'm enjoying it - and I trust my students are as well.

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