bookspacePhoto of readermy comments
 home > bookspace > my comments > comment: the intimate lives of the founding fathers [sound recording] /
Subscribe via RSS 
The intimate lives of the Founding Fathers [sound recording]
Fleming, Thomas J.
Adult Fiction E302.5 .F54 2010

Comments  Summary  Reviews

From Publishers' Weekly:

In this solid, sometimes titillating account, novelist and historian Fleming (The Perils of Peace) draws parallels to today's media obsession with our leaders' sex lives. The media were obsessed at the nation's beginning, too. As president, Washington suffered torrents of abuse, sometimes personal, but his marriage to Martha remained happy, although unconvincing efforts to find affairs, illegitimate children and slave mistresses persist to this day. The most genial founding father, Benjamin Franklin, had a shockingly bad family life with a jealous wife and dreadful relations with his son. Despite his brilliance, Alexander Hamilton behaved foolishly with women, triggering America's first public sex scandal. Fleming rocks no historical boats describing John and Abigail Adams's legendary love and agrees that Dolly brought color into the life of shy, intellectual James Madison. Jefferson's wife died young, and he focused his love on the often unhappy lives of two daughters. Examining the controversy over his slave, Sally Hemings, Fleming says evidence that he fathered her children remains inconclusive. Showing the more human and sometimes unlikable sides of our founders, the author writes good history, debunking more scandal than he confirms. (Nov) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

From Library Journal:

Fleming (The Perils of Peace: America's Struggle for Survival After Yorktown) takes a peek at the personal and family lives of six key American figures-George Washington, Benjamin Franklin, John Adams, Alexander Hamilton, Thomas Jefferson, and James Madison-exploring their relationships with girlfriends, wives, children, extended family members, and, in some cases, extramarital lovers and quasi-lovers. Replete with assumptions and wild guesses, this book breaks no new ground in historical scholarship, merely providing general readers with an accessible overview of what has long been known to scholars-that the fallible Founding Fathers depended on the love and emotional support of family and others to achieve their personal and political goals. Jefferson and Sally Hemings garner special attention, with a tiresomely in-depth and opinionated examination of scholarly views and scientific inquiries surrounding this centuries-old controversy. The book's one redeeming chapter-a provocative psychological examination of Dolley and James Madison's marriage-is also the briefest and most underdeveloped. Verdict Tacky and pointless, Fleming's lowbrow latest may have marginal appeal as recreational reading for undiscerning fans of early American history's most familiar faces. Students and scholars can certainly skip it.-Douglas King, Univ. of South Carolina Lib., Columbia (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Be the first to add a comment! Share your thoughts about this title. Would you recommend it? Why or why not?

Question about returns, requests or other account details?
 Add a Comment
Submission Guidelines

Find this title in the Library Catalog
Find this title in the Library Catalog


more titles about

recent comments
hcl mobile app
hclib
mobile
app
Facebook Twitter Tumblr YouTube Vimeo Flickr Federal Depository Library Federal
Depository
Library
Hennepin County Government Hennepin
County
Government
© 2014  Hennepin County Library12601 Ridgedale Drive, Minnetonka, MN 55305 Comments and Feedback    |    RSS