Shared booklist

The American Revolution

Welcome to my list of books used by Joanne B. Freeman, Professor of History, Yale University, for her course about the American Revolution. You can download the lectures for free on the internet. While the lectures are still interesting, the central book used by Freeman - Major Problems in the Era of the American Revolution, 1760-1791 - is not available at the BPL.

8 items

Faces of revolution

Bernard Bailyn. |

Presenting the best arguments from Bailyn's Ideological Origins of the American Revolution - which won a Pulitzer prize in 1967 - this book argues that The Revolution was not class warfare: liberty and freedom were central to the colonial understanding that the British intended to establish a tyrannical state that would abridge the historical British rights.

The minutemen and their world


Gross told the story of everyday Americans who fought at Concord by exploring their reasons for volunteering. The book most prominently argues that the interpersonal marketplace offered a better option for economic survival over the old system of inheritance, thus loosening family ties and enabling young colonists to embrace the revolution.

The Federalist papers

Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, and John Jay ; edited with an introduction and notes by Lawrence Goldman. |

Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, and John Jay wrote a series of arguments that argued ratification of the American Constitution, drafted in 1787 in Philadelphia.

Common sense

Thomas Paine. |

Alternatively, read the version that I produced for Project Gutenberg (pg147)

A People's History of the American Revolution


Raphael explores how common people - Indians, slaves, merchants and farmers - were agents to the American Revolution as much as the political leaders in Continental Congress.

The radicalism of the American revolution

Gordon S. Wood. |

Wood's Pulitzer Prize winning book explores the social transformation of Colonial America from Monarchy to Republicanism to Democracy, a change that forced the split from England and a political revolution in America in 1800.

The American revolution

Gordon S. Wood. |

The glorious cause

Robert Middlekauff. |

A possible replacement for the Brown book. Highly recommended.