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Download Master of the Mountain: Thomas Jefferson and His Slaves Audiobook (Unabridged)

Extended Audio Sample Master of the Mountain: Thomas Jefferson and His Slaves (Unabridged), by Henry Wiencek
4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 4.00 (173 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Henry Wiencek Narrator: Brian Holsopple Publisher: HighBridge Company Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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Is there anything new to say about Thomas Jefferson and slavery? The answer is a resounding yes. Henry Wiencek's eloquent, persuasive book - based on new information coming from archaeological work at Monticello and on hitherto overlooked or disregarded evidence in Jefferson's papers - opens up a huge, poorly understood dimension of Jefferson's world. We must, Wiencek suggests, follow the money.

So far historians have offered only easy irony or paradox to explain this extraordinary Founding Father who was an emancipationist in his youth and then recoiled from his own inspiring rhetoric and equivocated about slavery, who enjoyed his renown as a revolutionary leader yet kept some of his own children as slaves. But Wiencek's Jefferson is a man of business and public affairs who makes a success of his debt-ridden plantation thanks to what he calls the silent profits gained from his slaves - and thanks to a skewed moral universe that he and thousands of others readily inhabited.

Many people of Jefferson's time saw a catastrophe coming and tried to stop it, but not Jefferson. The pursuit of happiness had been badly distorted, and an oligarchy was getting very rich. Is this the quintessential American story?

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Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Misty | 2/17/2014

    " This book was really interesting and also a little boring at times. I learned a lot but think this book is more for people who have a serious interest in American presidents. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Kat Myers | 1/24/2014

    " Wiencek uncovers a version of Thomas Jefferson that is definitely NOT the one you were taught in school. Gone is the profound opponent of slavery who has stood on a moral high ground for hundreds of years. He is replaced by a real person, and not necessarily someone you like or even respect. This book will certainly be a blow for lovers of the myth of the benevolent American "Founding Father" legend, and it is for this reason especially that it deserves to be read by as wide an audience as possible. If you like your history with a good dose of harsh reality, then this is the book for you. Wiencek gives it to us "straight" and the tale that he tells is all the more fascinating and enjoyable because of it. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Terry | 1/16/2014

    " This eye-opening book focuses on Jefferson's varying perspectives on slavery, revealing the inconsistencies between Jefferson the philosopher, who proposed including the abolition of slavery into the Declaration of Independence, and Jefferson the practical plantation owner, who relied upon slavery. He indeed wrote positively about the economic benefits of slavery, which supported the agricultural and manufacturing system that made his luxurious lifestyle possible. The interactions between key slaves (including the Hemings) and Jefferson, and the regular encouragement he received from Lafayette and others to free his slaves, form an on-going thread in the book. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by GregP | 1/7/2014

    " Nice, informative account of Jefferson, Monticello, and the slaves who made Jefferson and Monticello historically significant. Jefferson "walked both sides of the fence" concerning slavery. His economic prosperity was grounded in slavery. Ironically, his bankruptcy followed suit. Wiencek eludes that Jefferson loved Sally Hemmings as his father loved Sally's mother. This book sheds a lot of light on society's amalgamation or first interracial families. "

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