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Liberty, Equality, Power: A History of the American People, Volume I: To 1877, Concise Edition 6th Edition

John M. Murrin, Paul E. Johnson, James M. McPherson, Alice Fahs, Gary Gerstle, Emily S. Rosenberg, Norman L. Rosenberg

  • Published
  • Previous Editions 2011, 2009, 2007
  • 480 Pages


LIBERTY, EQUALITY, POWER offers students a clear, concise understanding of how America transformed itself, in a relatively short time, from a land inhabited by hunter-gatherer and agricultural Native American societies into the most powerful industrial nation on earth. The authors promote this understanding by telling the story of America through the lens of three major themes: liberty, equality, and power. This approach helps students understand not only the effect of the notions of liberty and equality, which are often associated with the American story, but also how dominant and subordinate groups have affected and been affected by the ever-shifting balance of power. LIBERTY, EQUALITY, POWER continues to offer strong political, social, and cultural coverage and valuable pedagogical tools including "History Through Film" to help draw students into the material and show the relevance of history to their own lives. Available in the following split options: LIBERTY, EQUALITY, POWER: A HISTORY OF THE AMERICAN PEOPLE, CONCISE SIXTH EDITION Complete, Volume 1: To 1877, and Volume 2: Since 1863.

John M. Murrin, Princeton University

John M. Murrin studies American colonial and revolutionary history and the early republic. He has edited one multivolume series and five books, including two essay collections−COLONIAL AMERICA: ESSAYS IN POLITICS AND SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT, Sixth Edition (2010), and SAINTS AND REVOLUTIONARIES: ESSAYS IN EARLY AMERICAN HISTORY (1984). His own essays cover topics ranging from ethnic tensions, the early history of trial by jury, the emergence of the legal profession, the Salem witch trials, and the political culture of the colonies and the new nation to the rise of professional baseball and college football in the nineteenth century. He served as president of the Society for Historians of the Early American Republic in 1998−1999.

Paul E. Johnson, University of South Carolina, Distinguished Professor Emeritus

A specialist in early national social history, Paul E. Johnson is the author of THE EARLY AMERICAN REPUBLIC, 1789–1829 (2006); SAM PATCH, THE FAMOUS JUMPER (2003); and A SHOPKEEPER'S MILLENNIUM: SOCIETY AND REVIVALS IN ROCHESTER, NEW YORK, 1815–1837, 25th Anniversary Edition (2004). In addition, he is coauthor (with Sean Wilentz) of THE KINGDOM OF MATTHIAS: SEX AND SALVATION IN 19TH-CENTURY AMERICA (1994) and is editor of AFRICAN-AMERICAN CHRISTIANITY: ESSAYS IN HISTORY (1994). He was awarded the Merle Curti Prize of the Organization of American Historians (1980), the Richard P. McCormack Prize of the New Jersey Historical Association (1989), and fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities (1985–1986), the John Simon Guggenheim Foundation (1995), the Gilder Lehrman Institute (2001), and the National Endowment for the Humanities We the People Fellowship (2006-2007).

James M. McPherson, Princeton University, Emeritus

James M. McPherson is a distinguished Civil War historian. He won the 1989 Pulitzer Prize for his book BATTLE CRY OF FREEDOM: THE CIVIL WAR ERA. His other publications include MARCHING TOWARD FREEDOM: BLACKS IN THE CIVIL WAR, Second Edition (1991); ORDEAL BY FIRE: THE CIVIL WAR AND RECONSTRUCTION, Third Edition (2001); ABRAHAM LINCOLN AND THE SECOND AMERICAN REVOLUTION (1991); FOR CAUSE AND COMRADES: WHY MEN FOUGHT IN THE CIVIL WAR (1997), which won the Lincoln Prize in 1998; CROSSROADS OF FREEDOM: ANTIETAM (2002); HALLOWED GROUND: A WALK AT GETTYSBURG (2003); and TRIED BY WAR: ABRAHAM LINCOLN AS COMMANDER IN CHIEF (2008), which won the Lincoln Prize for 2009. Professor McPherson served as president of the American Historical Association (2003-2004).

Alice Fahs, University of California, Irvine

Alice Fahs is a specialist in American cultural history of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Her book THE IMAGINED CIVIL WAR: POPULAR LITERATURE OF THE NORTH AND SOUTH, 1861–1865 (2001) was a finalist in 2002 for the Lincoln Prize. Together with Joan Waugh, she published the edited collection THE MEMORY OF THE CIVIL WAR IN AMERICAN CULTURE (2004). She also edited Louisa May Alcott's HOSPITAL SKETCHES (2004), an account of Alcott's nursing experiences during the Civil War first published in 1863. Fahs's most recent book is OUT ON ASSIGNMENT: NEWSPAPER WOMEN AND THE MAKING OF MODERN PUBLIC SPACE (2011). Her honors include an American Council of Learned Societies Fellowship and a Gilder Lehrman Fellowship, as well as fellowships from the American Antiquarian Society, the Newberry Library, and the Huntington Library.

Gary Gerstle, Vanderbilt University

Gary Gerstle is the Paul Mellon Professor of American History at the University of Cambridge. He previously taught at Princeton University, the Catholic University of America, the University of Maryland, and Vanderbilt University. A historian of the twentieth-century United States, he is the author, coauthor, and coeditor of six books and the author of nearly 35 articles. His books include WORKING-CLASS AMERICANISM: THE POLITICS OF LABOR IN A TEXTILE CITY, 1914–1960 (1989); AMERICAN CRUCIBLE: RACE AND NATION IN THE TWENTIETH CENTURY (2001), winner of the Saloutos Prize for the best work in immigration and ethnic history; THE RISE AND FALL OF THE NEW DEAL ORDER, 1930–1980 (1989); and RULING AMERICA: WEALTH AND POWER IN A DEMOCRACY (2005). A new book on the principles underlying the use of public power in America from the Revolution to the present will soon be published by Princeton University Press. He has served on the board of editors of the Journal of American History and the American Historical Review. His honors include a National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship, a John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Fellowship, the Harmsworth Visiting Professorship of American History at the University of Oxford, and membership in the Society of American Historians.

Emily S. Rosenberg, University of California, Irvine

Emily Rosenberg specializes in U.S. foreign relations in the twentieth century and is the author of SPREADING THE AMERICAN DREAM: AMERICAN ECONOMIC AND CULTURAL EXPANSION, 1890–1945 (1982); FINANCIAL MISSIONARIES TO THE WORLD: THE POLITICS AND CULTURE OF DOLLAR DIPLOMACY (1999), which won the Ferrell Book Award; A DATE WHICH WILL LIVE: PEARL HARBOR IN AMERICAN MEMORY (2004); and TRANSNATIONAL CURRENTS IN A SHRINKING WORLD, 1870–1945 (2014). Her other publications include (with Norman L. Rosenberg) IN OUR TIMES: AMERICA SINCE 1945, Seventh Edition (2003), and numerous articles dealing with foreign relations in the context of international finance, American culture, and gender ideology. She has served on the board of the Organization of American Historians, on the board of editors of the American Historical Review, and as president of the Society for Historians of American Foreign Relations.

Norman L. Rosenberg, Macalester College

Norman L. Rosenberg specializes in legal history with a particular interest in legal culture and First Amendment issues. His books include PROTECTING THE 'BEST MEN': AN INTERPRETIVE HISTORY OF THE LAW OF LIBEL (1990) and (with Emily S. Rosenberg) IN OUR TIMES: AMERICA SINCE 1945, Seventh Edition (2003). He has published articles in Rutgers Law Review, UCLA Law Review, Constitutional Commentary, Law and History Review, and many other journals and law-related anthologies.
  • New "Visual Link to the Past" features focus on a single piece of art, material culture, or photography that reveals something important about the historical era in which it was produced. Extended captions explore the historical significance of the object and then pose a question for individual assignment or classroom discussion. Topics include "A Southern View of Slavery" (Chapter 9) and "Manifest Destiny" (Chapter 13).
  • New "Link to the Past" features spotlight brief primary source excerpts and include a question to involve students in "doing history." Topics include "A City Upon a Hill" (Chapter 2) and "A Slave Mother and the Slave Trade" (Chapter 9).
  • Identification lists have been added to the study aids at the end of each chapter.
  • The very popular "History Through Film" features encourage students to think critically about what they see on screen and get them thinking about historical questions through a medium with which they are already familiar and comfortable. The features offer summaries of the films, note the interesting historical questions that they intentionally or unintentionally raise (and that students can fruitfully discuss), and offer a commentary on the accuracy or inaccuracy of historical figures and events as seen through the lens of the camera and the vision of the director. Featured films include 1776 (Chapter 5), A MIDWIFE'S TALE (Chapter 8), and AMISTAD (Chapter 11).
  • "Discovery" sections at the end of each chapter guide students through the process of analyzing historical sources by taking a second, closer look at selected images, maps, charts, and quotes. Discovery questions provide opportunities for students to practice "doing history." An accompanying introduction at the beginning of the text explains how historians use source materials and encourages students to develop critical-thinking skills.
  • The strength of the book's author team accounts for its high-quality narrative and analysis. Among the members of this distinguished team are James McPherson, a Pulitzer Prize winner, and John Murrin, one of the pre-eminent colonial historians today. The concise sixth edition also incorporates the work of coauthor Alice Fahs (University of California, Irvine) who is an accomplished historian of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, with special expertise in cultural history and the history of gender.
  • LIBERTY, EQUALITY, POWER includes a guide to using maps to help students identify the different types of maps (political, demographic, topographic, and military) and how these maps illustrate various types of information. This overview explains the importance of scale, using a legend, using the captions and topographic elements, as well as using maps for review when studying in order to help students get the most out of the book.
  • Map captions highlight the major features and significant relationships between geographical locations, point to specific geographic/topographic features or spatial relationships, and encourage comparison between maps.
  • "Musical Link to the Past" features lend an ear to musical movements and musicians of various eras. The features provide brief commentary, quotes from significant lyrics, and a "link" to sound recordings available on CD or accessible online.
1. When Old Worlds Collide: Contact, Conquest, Catastrophe.
2. The Challenge to Spain and the Settlement of North America.
3. England Discovers Its Colonies: Empire, Liberty, and Expansion.
4. Provincial America and the Struggle for a Continent.
5. Reform, Resistance, Revolution.
6. The Revolutionary Republic.
7. Completing the Revolution, 1789-1815.
8. Northern Transformations, 1790-1850.
9. The Old South, 1790-1850.
10. Toward an American Culture.
11. Whigs and Democrats.
12. Antebellum Reform.
13. Manifest Destiny: An Empire for Liberty--or Slavery?
14. The Gathering Tempest, 1853-1860.
15. Secession and Civil War, 1860-1862.
16. A New Birth of Freedom, 1862-1865.
17. Reconstruction, 1863-1877.

Textbook Only Options

Traditional eBook and Print Options

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  • ISBN-10: 1285649672
  • ISBN-13: 9781285649672
  • STARTING AT $15.49

  • STARTING AT $18.99

  • ISBN-10: 1133947735
  • ISBN-13: 9781133947738
  • Bookstore Wholesale Price $90.00
  • RETAIL $119.95

"I have been using [LIBERTY, EQUALITY, POWER] for 10 years at 4 different colleges; I believe it provides excellent value for the money. . . appreciate & enjoy the social history strand woven through the narrative which elevates the interest & participation of my students. . . good overall narrative appropriate for a lower division survey at the right level for the average students."

"I like the thematic approach [of LIBERTY, EQUALITY, POWER]--it helps students to connect the material from chapter to chapter. It also enables us to track the progress of the country in the selected areas."

"I also love the movie and music features as well as the primary documents. [Students] get at a lot of different ways to access and understand historical processes."