Saturday, October 22, 2011
Not often that you get a book recommendation from Club Mod, but this one - A Renegade History of the United States - was raucously entertaining. Thaddeus Russell shows how the dregs of American society - the slaves, drunks, prostitutes, Irish (!) etc - shaped many of the freedoms that we take for granted today - in direct disobeyance of the authorities, such as being able to go to a dance, wear what we like, play rock music etc. It also provides evidence against some of the conventional wisdom we have all internalized, showing, for example, that ex-slaves wanted to go back to being slaves, the deep unpopularity among the populace of going to war in World War II, and so on.
I loved it.