Roger Williams and the Creation of the American Soul Church, State and the Birtg of Liberty

ISBN-10: 0670023051
ISBN-13: 9780670023059
Edition: 2012
Authors: John M. Barry
List price: $35.00 Buy it from $3.00
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Description: A revelatory look at how Roger Williams shaped the nature of religion, political power, and individual rights in America. For four hundred years, Americans have wrestled with and fought over two concepts that define the nature of the nation: the  More...

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Book details

List price: $35.00
Copyright year: 2012
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 1/5/2012
Binding: Hardcover
Pages: 480
Size: 6.75" wide x 10.00" long x 1.75" tall
Weight: 0.682
Language: English

A revelatory look at how Roger Williams shaped the nature of religion, political power, and individual rights in America. For four hundred years, Americans have wrestled with and fought over two concepts that define the nature of the nation: the proper relation between church and state and between a free individual and the state. These debates began with the extraordinary thought and struggles of Roger Williams, who had an unparalleled understanding of the conflict between a government that justified itself by "reason of state"-i.e. national security-and its perceived "will of God" and the "ancient rights and liberties" of individuals. This is a story of power, set against Puritan America and the English Civil War. Williams's interactions with King James, Francis Bacon, Oliver Cromwell, and his mentor Edward Coke set his course, but his fundamental ideas came to fruition in America, as Williams, though a Puritan, collided with John Winthrop's vision of his "City upon a Hill."Acclaimed historian John M. Barry explores the development of these fundamental ideas through the story of the man who was the first to link religious freedom to individual liberty, and who created in America the first government and society on earth informed by those beliefs. The story is essential to the continuing debate over how we define the role of religion and political power in modern American life.

John M. Barry was born in 1947. He is a widely respected journalist who has covered national politics extensively. He has used this background to write two highly acclaimed books of nonfiction. The Ambition and the Power: A True Story of Washington (1989 is an examination of use and abuse of power. In Rising Tide: The Great Mississippi Flood of 1927 and How It Changed America (1997), he revisits the power theme, but this time in the setting of a natural disaster. Barry is a careful researcher who documents the devastating facts of the flood and intertwines it with the fascinating story of powerful men and their selfish agendas. The conflict between the ruling class and black racists, the clash of former Senator LeRoy Percy and demagogue James K. Vardaman, the candidacy of Herbert Hoover, and the backlash election of Huey Long, all had roots in the policies surrounding the flood. Barry's political expertise comes from his years as Washington editor of Dun's Review, where he covered national politics. He has written for the Washington Post and magazines such as Sports Illustrated, Newsweek, and Esquire. The Transformed Cell: Unlocking the Mysteries of Cancer, coauthored with oncologist Steven A. Rosenberg, has been published in twelve languages. Barry maintains two homes, one in New Orleans and another in Washington, D.C.

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