Book Review

Book Review: Hartman on Kazin’s Godly Hero

Michael Kazin. A Godly Hero: the Life of William Jennings Bryan. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 2006. ISBN 0-375-41135-6 (374 pp.)

Reviewer: Andrew Hartman

One of the main threads of United States historiography is the search for an authentic working class. This search has often proved fruitless, at least insofar as scholars have tied authentic working-class behavior to voting patterns. It seems the working class has rarely voted in accordance with its economic interests and instead is motivated by other, less rational, perhaps unconscious pursuits. This historiographic thread might best be summed up by Werner Sombart’s famous question that he posed in 1906: “Why is there no socialism in the United States?” For more, see the full review here.

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