Richard Hofstadter





Richard Hofstadter


Born
in Buffalo, New York, The United States
August 06, 1916

Died
October 24, 1970

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Charles Beard, Merle Curti, Karl Marx, F. Scott Fitzgerald, H. L. Menc ...more


Richard Hofstadter was an American public intellectual, historian and DeWitt Clinton Professor of American History at Columbia University. In the course of his career, Hofstadter became the “iconic historian of postwar liberal consensus” whom twenty-first century scholars continue consulting, because his intellectually engaging books and essays continue to illuminate contemporary history.

His most important works are Social Darwinism in American Thought, 1860–1915 (1944); The American Political Tradition (1948); The Age of Reform (1955); Anti-intellectualism in American Life (1963), and the essays collected in The Paranoid Style in American Politics (1964). He was twice awarded the Pulitzer Prize: in 1956 for The Age of Reform, an unsentimen
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Average rating: 4.02 · 5,443 ratings · 347 reviews · 41 distinct works · Similar authors
Anti-Intellectualism in Ame...

4.18 avg rating — 1,590 ratings — published 1963 — 8 editions
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The Age of Reform

3.89 avg rating — 1,390 ratings — published 1955 — 8 editions
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The American Political Trad...

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3.99 avg rating — 1,233 ratings — published 1948 — 11 editions
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The Paranoid Style in Ameri...

4.19 avg rating — 707 ratings — published 1964 — 12 editions
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Social Darwinism in America...

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3.79 avg rating — 168 ratings — published 1955 — 6 editions
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America at 1750: A Social P...

3.53 avg rating — 102 ratings — published 1971 — 6 editions
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The Idea of a Party System:...

3.72 avg rating — 72 ratings — published 1969 — 3 editions
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Great Issues in American Hi...

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3.91 avg rating — 33 ratings — published 1958 — 6 editions
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The Progressive Historians:...

3.82 avg rating — 38 ratings — published 1968 — 7 editions
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Great Issues in American Hi...

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3.90 avg rating — 30 ratings — published 1973 — 6 editions
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Great Issues in American Hi... Great Issues in American Hi... Great Issues in American Hi...
Great Issues in American History (3 books)
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3.91 avg rating — 79 ratings

“It is a poor head that cannot find plausible reason for doing what the heart wants to do.”
Richard Hofstadter, The American Political Tradition and the Men Who Made It

“If for every error and every act of incompetence one can substitute an act of treason, many points of fascinating interpretation are open to the paranoid imagination.”
Richard Hofstadter, The Paranoid Style in American Politics and Other Essays

“As a member of the avant-garde who is capable of perceiving the conspiracy before it is fully obvious to an as yet unaroused public, the paranoid is a militant leader. He does not see social conflict as something to be mediated and compromised, in the manner of the working politician. Since what is at stake is always a conflict between absolute good and absolute evil, what is necessary is not compromise but the will to fight things out to a finish. Since the enemy is thought of as being totally evil and totally unappeasable, he must be totally eliminated–if not from the world, at least from the theatre of operations to which the paranoid directs his attention. This demand for total triumph leads to the formulation of hopelessly unrealistic goals, and since these goals are not even remotely attainable, failure constantly heightens the paranoid’s sense of frustration. Even partial success leaves him with the same feeling of powerlessness with which he began, and this in turn only strengthens his awareness of the vast and terrifying quality of the enemy he opposes.”
Richard Hofstadter, The Paranoid Style in American Politics and Other Essays