Gordan S. Woods
Revolutionary characters, iis a compliation of essays and articles written over time by Gordan s. Woods. He was trying to teach his audience that our four fathers were a group of unique elite men that wanted to ensure our freedom, and our fatih in God. Wood believed that they were a group of self-made aristocrats that came together as a product of their time and vision for America's future. The founders derived a governemnt powered by its people that relied on a disinterested group of citizens to lead them forward. In order to elect the right leaders to run our country they felt our citizens needed to be educated, and have morals bassed on christianity.
“As long as this Republic endures, he ought to be first in the hearts of his countrymen. Washington was truly a great man, and the greatest president we ever had.” Gordan S. Woods felt it necessary to start his book with George ...view middle of the document...
By taking part in the convention he put his reputaion, which he worked hard to protect, on the line. After carefully weighing his motivations and the risks to his reputation, what finally convinced him to participate was the fear that people might think he wanted the federal government to fail so he could step in. Again and again Washinton proved him self as a graet leader and his character proved the strength necessary to launch our government.
In the essays following the section on Washington, Woods covers Franklin, Jefferson, Hamilton, and Madison. Madison is perhaps the most interestibg characte discussed. Madison confuses some historians ecause of his change from Federalist to Anti-federalist through out his career. Wood shows how his action were actually very consistant throughout.
The book concludes with the rejected founders, Thomas Paine and Aaron Burr. Thomas Painr was never fully acceoted as part of the "greats" , because though hehad a humble character, he never tried transformed himself into the trype of gentlemen the founds emulated. Pain is more representstive of the Republic we livein today. Aaron Burr seemed to reject the principle of service and disinterest that were so important to our founding fathers. He was a very ambitiouse man with values oposite of Washinton, and was not accepted by Federalists and Anti-federalists. Burr's character if of the people to follow the founders.
Wood compares the conversations of the elite founders, to those of the widepread masses. Thomas Paine began this pricess by bringing the idea of the federalists and antifederalists down the masses.Republicans attempted to embrace this democratic movement, while the Federalists tried to stem the tide of popular participation that ultimately rolled over both factions and became the system we have today.
Wood concludes: “In the end nothing illustrates better the transforming power of the American Revolution than the way its intellectual and political leaders, that remarkable group of men, contributed to their own demise.” Althoygh the founders set up a system so perfect that it doesnt need a disintersted elite to run it, time has proven that men of their character are necessary to maintain it.