The Age of Federalism

By Stanley Elkins; Eric McKitrick | Go to book overview

CHAPTER VIII
The French Revolution
in America

1
How Two Peoples Have Viewed Each Other

The two national civilizations of Western Europe with which Americans have had most to do in the course of their history are those of Great Britain and France. But between these two sets of connections there has been a vast disparity. In their character, quality, and substance the Anglo-American and the Franco-American understandings could hardly be more different.

In the case of our relations with the French, unlike those with the English, there has somehow been nothing very cumulative. One finds strikingly little in the way of interpenetration and growth, even down to the present time. Thus a modern writer can still complain of "mutual ignorance," and urge that "each society do better in educating its citizens about the other"--a sentiment no less appropriate, or no more, than at any time during the preceding two hundred years. 1

Past experience in this respect has been full of extravagant contradictions. The most perceptive book ever written by a foreigner about America was the work of a Frenchman. But in spite of Tocqueville, it is hard to think of one major society more consistently misinformed or uninformed about another -- or subject to wilder misconceptions -- than France about the United States. True, our only non-American national hero has been the Marquis de Lafayette, and our most conspicuous national monument -- the Statue of Liberty -- was the gift of the people of France, the funds for it having been raised by popular subscription. But while there have been periods of mutual enthusiasm -- indeed, of the most passionate attachment -- these have been fitful and intermittent, and generally followed by disenchantment. The more normal state has been one of suspicion, even antipathy; more normal still have been long periods of unconcern and a "mutual ignorance" that had the look, at times, of being almost actively pursued. 2 In earlier times a fair number of Frenchmen were transfixed, at a distance, by the vision of America as a kind of Arcadia. The reality of what they found, in the event of an actual visit, was oftener than not appalling. "In fact," wrote a reviewer of travel

-303-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
The Age of Federalism
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen
/ 925

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.