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John Adams

John and Abigail Adams remained faithful to what they believed were the permanent things. How might twenty-first-century Americans use their correspondence to better address the public questions that touch upon the fundamentals of American constitutional liberty?...

Political Architecture: The Natural Order of the Many A full understanding of the passion for distinction requires that we look at man not only as the object of attention but also as the agent of notice, as...
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Within his general view of man as naturally social, John Adams explored the nature of the passion for distinction. To speak of man as gregarious is merely to identify a human inclination to "go in flocks or herds,...

As elaborated thus far, natural law teaches that legitimate government is circumscribed by liberty in a dual sense: It derives from the consent of equally free individuals, and it aims at securing the natural rights which comprise...

As a political writer, John Adams is most remembered today for the constitutional prescriptions by which he helped to solidify the American Revolution. His Thoughts on Government was widely circulated in 1776 and helped hasten and...

This spring, Library of America releases John Adams: Writings from the New Nation 1784–1826, the third and final volume of Gordon S. Wood’s landmark edition of the great patriot’s works. It includes letters, diary excerpts,...
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Editor's Note: On the fourteenth day of January, 1784, the Revolutionary War ended as the United States ratified the Treaty of Paris with England. In honor of this event, let us...

In The Conservative Mind, John Quincy Adams appears as a flawed, failed conservative. Though he “felt the pressing necessity for conservative principle in the conduct of American affairs,” Adams “never quite discovered how to fix upon...

Yesterday, the greatest question was decided, which ever was debated in America, and a greater, perhaps, never was nor will be decided among men. A resolution was passed without one dissenting colony, That these...

Poor John Adams. He will almost always stand in the shadows of George Washington and Thomas Jefferson. He will always be remembered first and foremost as a dumpy bulldog, a failed president, and the husband of Abigail Adams....

    John Adams and the Spirit of Liberty, by C. Bradley Thompson, Lawrence, Kansas: University Press of Kansas, 1998. John Adams (1735-1826) was the most traditionalist of the American...

John Adams What kind of person is worthy of being called a “statesman”? What type of character, what accomplishments, what life makes someone a defender of the public good within the sphere of politics and governance?...

John Adams has finally gotten the fame he craved, but it was a long time coming over a rough road. Already as a young man he tortured himself thinking about a future without fame. Historians don't need to speculate...

Once Forgotten Founding Father and Philosopher President Makes a Comeback.... Why? Ten years ago, David McCullough told audiences something that still has the capacity to surprise us. The Pulitzer Prize-winning author said that he initially intended to...