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William Bradford's Books: Of Plimmoth Plantation and the Printed Word Hardcover – 16 Dec 2002

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Product Description


Meticulously researched and eloquently argued... This lovingly fashioned biography of the first American history book affirms the fundamental responsibilities of good history writing.

(Richard J. Bell New England Quarterly)

The extraordinary care with which Anderson has crafted his own book can be seen as a kind of homage to its subject... William Bradford's Books is in many ways an unexpectedly rewarding read and a major contribution to early American studies. It is a text that literary critics and historians are both likely to engage with and to rely on for a long time to come and that is poised to change forever how Of Plimmoth Plantation is read and taught.

(Michelle Burnham William and Mary Quarterly)

A model of close reading based on strategies that few if any early Americanists have employed.

(David D. Hall Common-Place)

A substantial analysis of the form and content of Bradford's history of Plymouth studied against the era's reading practices, publishing conventions, and scriptural interpretations... By making sense of Bradford's manuscript, Anderson brings Bradford himself closer.

(Mark Noll First Things)

The publication of Douglas Anderson's fine book seems, well, providential, and one hopes that it finds the audience that it so richly deserves.

(David Read American Historical Review)

Anderson himself has written a book that presents Bradford's work in equally splendid and unexpected ways, restoring complexity and immediacy to a volume that we thought we knew all along... It is a rare accomplishment to bring readers back to a text as canonical as Of Plimmouth Plantation in a new way.

(Kathleen Donegan Early American Literature)

Anderson's skilled and subtle take on a classic text and its contexts reconstructs our image of Bradford's mental world. Catching the ebb tide of postmodernism, this keen work furnishes a model for future literary-historical scholarship.

(Michael McGiffert, Editor Emeritus, William and Mary Quarterly)

Through Anderson's rich and multifaceted portrait... the reader ultimately re-experiences the full meaning of Bradford's attempt to capture the Puritan experience in the New World.

(Oliver Scheiding Amerikastudien / American Studies)

Rarely can a scholar so thoroughly resituate such a foundational work as William Bradford's history as Anderson does here.

(Julie Sievers Libraries and Culture)

About the Author

Douglas Anderson is the Sterling Goodman Professor of English at the University of Georgia. He is the author of A House Undivided: Domesticity and Community in American Literature and The Radical Enlightenments of Benjamin Franklin, the latter available from Johns Hopkins.

Inside This Book

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First Sentence
OF PLIMMOTH PLANTATION, the "scribled writings" that William Bradford reports that he began to set down in 1630 and "peeced up at times of leasure" for the next twenty years, remained in manuscript for so long and survived so many remarkable vicissitudes that the book's appearance in print for the first time, in the Collections of the Massachusetts Historical Society for 1856, seems only a little less miraculous than the survival of the tiny community whose story Bradford set out to tell. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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