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The War That Made America: A Short History of the French and Indian War

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The War That Made America: A Short History of the French and Indian War Cover

ISBN13: 9780143038047
ISBN10: 0143038044
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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

The globe's first true world war comes vividly to life in this "rich, cautionary tale" (The New York Times Book Review)

The French and Indian War -the North American phase of a far larger conflagration, the Seven Years' War-remains one of the most important, and yet misunderstood, episodes in American history. Fred Anderson takes readers on a remarkable journey through the vast conflict that, between 1755 and 1763, destroyed the French Empire in North America, overturned the balance of power on two continents, undermined the ability of Indian nations to determine their destinies, and lit the "long fuse" of the American Revolution. Beautifully illustrated and recounted by an expert storyteller, The War That Made America is required reading for anyone interested in the ways in which war has shaped the history of America and its peoples.

Synopsis:

The companion volume to a major PBS documentary series is a vivid look at arguably the most pivotal war in early American history. Beautifully illustrated, this is the story of how America emerged from a series of fractured colonies and warring tribes into a nation ripe for independence.

About the Author

Fred Anderson is professor of history at the University of Colorado at Boulder. He is the author of several books, including Crucible of War, which won the Francis Parkman and Mark Lynton prizes.

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OneMansView, February 22, 2010 (view all comments by OneMansView)
Highly detailed overview (3.7 *s)

This book is a substantially condensed version of the author’s earlier “Crucible of War,” yet manages to cover all sorts of matters pertinent to the French and Indian War actually beginning in 1753 to its conclusion in 1763: the situation in the West and developments that led to the War; the important and changing role of various Indian groups throughout the lengthy engagement; the wide-ranging battles and campaigns waged all across the northern tier of the colonies including Fort Duquesne on the Ohio River, the Lake Ontario forts, numerous forts up and down Lake Champlain, and extending to Louisbourg on Cape Breton Island; the increased and focused British War efforts after initial stumbles; innumerable French and British leaders – some inept, others quite capable; and some commentary on what it all meant, such as the future of the Indian tribes and the prospects and mindsets of the American colonists as they shared in the victory of the British empire.

There is a sense that the book is a bit too tightly packed with explanations sacrificed for the need to include details. However, the untold difficulties, the mistakes, the shortages of supplies, the harsh conditions, the extreme loss of life combined with cruel savagery, the lack of communication, the role of fortune, and the like in waging a war over a vast territory in the mid-eighteenth century that permeate this work are scarcely possible to comprehend 250 years later. Such a book is a challenge to read; it’s rather easy to lose track in the complicated narratives of the numerous, simultaneous campaigns. Scattered maps help some. Many of the illustrations in the book of various documents are fairly useless – much too small to be read.

Is it the war that made America? That question is secondary to the author’s purposes. Perhaps one can point to the confluence of several destabilizing developments surrounding the War that when combined led to the formation of America: the territorial ambitions of the French that alarmed the British; the interest of both speculators and settlers in PA and VA in Indian-occupied lands; the sense that the colonists had of sacrifice and initiative equal to that of the British in the conduct of the War; the enormous debt incurred by the British in waging the War; and the subsequent high-handed policies of British ministers in attempting to recoup those costs from the colonists. The book is certainly informative, but one suspects that for those with the time, the longer version would far more substantially cover the period and the War.
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Product Details

ISBN:
9780143038047
Author:
Anderson, Fred
Publisher:
Penguin Books
Illustrator:
Stephenson, R. Scott
Subject:
Europe - France
Subject:
United States - Colonial Period
Subject:
Military - Other
Subject:
Indians of north america
Subject:
History
Subject:
Military - General
Subject:
Seven years war, 1756-1763
Subject:
United States History.
Subject:
Military-General History
Edition Description:
Paperback / softback
Publication Date:
20061131
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
from 12
Language:
English
Illustrations:
16-page color art insert on insert stock
Pages:
320
Dimensions:
8.44x5.56x.81 in. .67 lbs.
Age Level:
from 18

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Related Subjects

History and Social Science » Europe » Great Britain » General History
History and Social Science » Military » General History
History and Social Science » Military » Miscellaneous Wars
History and Social Science » Military » US Military » General
History and Social Science » US History » Colonial America
History and Social Science » US History » General
History and Social Science » World History » England » General
History and Social Science » World History » France » General

The War That Made America: A Short History of the French and Indian War New Trade Paper
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Product details 320 pages Penguin Books - English 9780143038047 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , The companion volume to a major PBS documentary series is a vivid look at arguably the most pivotal war in early American history. Beautifully illustrated, this is the story of how America emerged from a series of fractured colonies and warring tribes into a nation ripe for independence.

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