What role do relationships play in Ellis's writing, both in this chapter and in the book more generally?
This chapter in particular is driven by the relationships between John and Abigail Adams, and by John Adams's relationship with his vice-president Thomas Jefferson. Students should consider how relationships feature in Ellis's style of historical writing. They might observe that in fact, relationships as much as anecdotes organize the book and that the founders' relationships with each other often offer windows into their personalities and private lives. Students should also think about the frequent conflation between political and personal relationships in Founding...
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