John's Reviews > Founding Myths: Stories that Hide Our Patriotic Past

Founding Myths by Ray Raphael
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's review
Jan 02, 2011

liked it
bookshelves: history

Good book. The author debunked a lot of Revolution era hagiography. I personally do not find much credibility in "great person" or even "great generation" perspectives of history - people are flawed, no more or less so today than at any other time. So it was nice to read well-documented and solid recharacterizations of Paul Revere's ride, the battle at Bunker Hill, the winter at Valley Forge, etc. Raphael also explains how the mythological versions of these events were created and propagated.

He has a definite populist agenda which he beats like a drum. The chapter on Bunker Hill perhaps is the best example of this. However I learned a great deal about the era from this book and will likely follow up with some of the books recommended in his notes and bibliography.

For a comparison: I thought this book had a more obvious agenda, but was less didactic in tone, than Loewen's "Lies My Teacher Told Me"


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