The single-volume edition of Conceived in Liberty is here! After so many years of having to juggle four volumes, the Mises Institute has finally put it altogether in a single, 1,616-page book. This makes it easier to read, and makes clearer just what a contribution this book is to the history of libertarian literature.
There's never been a better time to remember the revolutionary and even libertarian roots of the American founding, and there's no better guide to what this means in the narrative of the Colonial period than Murray Rothbard.
For anyone who thinks of Murray Rothbard as only an economic theorist or political thinker, this giant book is something of a surprise. It is probably his least known treatise. It offers a complete history of the Colonial period of American history, a period lost to students today, who are led to believe American history begins with the US Constitution.
Rothbard's ambition was to shed new light on Colonial history and show that the struggle for human liberty was the heart and soul of this land from its discovery through the culminating event of the American Revolution. This volume is a tour de force, enough to establish Rothbard as one of the great American historians.
It is a detailed narrative history of the struggle between liberty and power, as we might expect, but it is more. Rothbard offers a third alternative to the conventional interpretive devices. Against those on the right who see the American Revolution as a "conservative" event, and those on the left who want to invoke it as some sort of proto-socialist uprising, Rothbard views this period as a time of accelerating libertarian radicalism. Through this prism, Rothbard illuminates events as never before.
The volumes were brought out in the 1970s, but the odd timing and uneven distribution prevented any kind of large audience. They were beloved only by a few specialists, and sought after by many, thanks to their outstanding reputation. The Mises Institute is pleased to be the publisher of this integrated book.
This single volume covers the discovery of the Americas and the colonies in the 17th century, the period of "salutary neglect" in the first half of the 18th century, the advance to revolution, from 1760-1775 and the political, military, and ideological history of the revolution and after.
I recommend this to anyone who is interested in the philosophical and political causes of the American Revolution. This goes into 10,000% more detail than anything I learned in school. I never appreciated the Founding Fathers and their forefathers as much as I do now.
Had this work been one of Murray Rothbard's only publications, it alone would have set him high in the rankings of the preeminent scholars of modern history. Having only read part of the 4 volume work in electronic form, I knew that I had to purchase this beautiful all-in-one version when it was released.
It opens and reads perfectly, just as well as the Scholars Editions of Human Action and Man, Economy, and State, and sits well in your hands or lap, with not as much weight as you would think. For being a 1600+ page book, the text is large, easy on the eyes, and enriching to the curious mind.
If you have ever wanted to have the full context of the era leading up to and including the American Revolution, and to see this critical period for Liberty through the eyes of a scholar who aptly mastered the subject, then GET THIS BOOK!
As the title says, I already have the 4-volume set. However when I say this edition -- all volumes in one place, a beautiful cover -- I went ahead and bought it! I'll probably donate the set to my local library.
P.S. This is an amazing book. Knowing what I know about the public school system, I'm not surprised I hadn't learned anything talked about in this book in my high school history classes.
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