I Love Paul Revere, Whether He Rode or Not
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I Love Paul Revere, Whether He Rode or Not

3.44 of 5 stars 3.44  ·  rating details  ·  108 ratings  ·  16 reviews
At long last in paperback, Richard Shenkman's bestselling sequel to Legends, Lies & Cherished Myths of American History. Provocative and amusingly heretical, "I Love Paul Revere, Whether He Rode or Not" (a quote attributed to Warren Harding) offers eye-opening revelations debunking long-held American legends.
Paperback, 240 pages
Published January 1st 1900 by Harper Perennial
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Rather than simply debunking historical myths, author Richard Shenkman delves into the ambiguity of history and the danger of confusing anecdote with fact.
As Shenkman reveals, much of what the reader accepts as history is actually exaggerated, dramatized, or downright false. When possible, the author reveals why, which is a story often as exciting as the original story itself.
Rather than being dispiriting and disillusioning, however, Shenkman's work breathes new life into history. It is empoweri...more
Bob Schmitz
The book is filled with tid-bits from history exposing the common practice of making a smooth story out of a messy contradictory history.
-The common story of John Adams heroically representing the British Soldiers of the Boston Massacre is tarnished by his exploitation of the prejudices of the jury calling the mob a "motley rabble of...Negroes and mulattoes, Irish teagues and outlandish jack tars"
-At Valley Forge the soldiers went "naked" a word in 18 century usage meant without proper clothing...more
Aaron Rodriguez
Shenkman offers a great rhetorical review on history and it's myths. At times though it is hard to understand what it is he is talking about I'd one is not familiar with particular historic events. Never the less, shenkman is a wonderful writer and historian and this book is worth reading. If not for the author's prose, then for the wonderful tidbits of history that you and (dare I say) others have misinterpreted. Shenkman points out that history is often misunderstood and forgotten at times, he...more
Liked it more than just a 3, not enough for a 4. The historical tidbits were very interesting and would make good classroom or cocktail party conversation (well, at least the parties I tend to go to), as well as provide a good starting point for a deeper examination of US history. However, the writing was nothing special, and it seemed that the pool became progressively shallower as the book continued--the amuse-bouche transformed into pretzels, but I munched through it all. If nothing else, the...more
Entertaining read that gives a glimpse into the history you thought you knew.
An interesting reexamination of lots of events in American history.
John Nondorf
Aug 28, 2007 John Nondorf rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: budding historians
Gave up on this one about half way through. Seems to me the author invented some "common misconceptions" about history and set about dispelling the myths he had created...like how everyone thinks women now (early 90's) have it worse than they did in the Colonial period or how everyone thinks the work ethic has vanished recently (ok, yeah, I'm writing this review at work).
The book isn't terrible, there are some enlightening sections even for readers with a working knowledge of History. In my opin...more
Joshua Taylor
Having taken advanced placement history in high school which delved into a deeper understanding and analysis of American History than most high school history courses, I feel this book was very enlightening to inner workings and personalities of our revered historical figures. We cannot assume that our history is perfect. Decisions made in the last 200+ years have many flaws that were covered over to make things sound better. This book opens those closed memory vaults and exposes our history for...more
I think this might be one of those books that is only relevant to a particular generation. A lot of the supposed myths in this book were completely new to me. Maybe they were widely taught at one time, but I never learned most of them in school. Moreover, I often found myself thinking that Schenkman was going farther than the actual evidence allowed. As he himself says more than once, primary sources almost always differ, and I thought he often relied too much on only one or two sources.
Aug 18, 2008 Ruth rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Readers who like history and facts
It's fun to see the fallacies and myths that have come to us over the years as Americans looking back on our history. I enjoyed seeing the author's research, and he writes in a largely engaging style, albeit in a way that tends to come across as a giant list of factoids in each chapter. His first book along these lines is called 'Legends, Lies and Cherished Myths of American History,' and this seems to be more of the same.
Josh Liller
Very disappointing. I read another book by the author called "Legends, Lies, and Cherished Myths of American History" which I enjoyed, but this one was dull.
the writing was a bit disjointed, and there wasn't a lot of cohesiveness to the chapters, other than the titles.
This was an entertaining read that explained many of the myths of American history and how they began.
Mark Singer
Not as good as Legends, Lies & Cherished Myths of American History, but still entertaining.
some sections of this book were real snoozers......
Things you missed in History Class.
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