America’s Revolutionary Mind

by C. Bradley Thompson

America’s Revolutionary Mind is the first major reinterpretation of the American Revolution since the publication of Bernard Bailyn’s The Ideological Origins of the American Revolution and Gordon S. Wood’s The Creation of the American Republic.

Image of C. Bradley Thompson's Newest Book, America's Revolutionary Mind
America’s Revolutionary Mind is indisputably a masterpiece. . . . A book for the ages.”
— Roger Kimball, Author & Editor of The New Criterion
“This book may be the most important work of American history in generations.  In fact, it may be the most important book of our time.”
— Robert Bidinotto, novelist & journalist
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“From one of America’s most astute scholars comes an extraordinarily rich study of the ideas that propelled the United States into existence, and to greatness. C. Bradley Thompson understands not just that ideas have consequences, but that, a quarter of a millennium later, the revolutionary mind retains its relevance.”

George F. Will, Columnist and Author of The Conservative Sensibility

“Behind the American Constitution is the Declaration of Independence, Lincoln’s ‘apple of gold’ in a ‘picture of silver.’ Brad Thompson here explains the apple of gold, the American revolutionary mind, and how to recover its moral power as well as its principles from the studied denigration current today. With strong argument, broad evidence, and shining clarity, this is a book that will last.”

Harvey C. Mansfield, Kenan Professor of Government, Harvard University; Senior Fellow, Hoover Institution, Stanford

“America’s Revolutionary Mind is a tour de force that vastly expands our understanding of the ideas that launched the American Revolution. Thompson goes beyond the groundbreaking intellectual histories by Bernard Bailyn and Gordon Wood by explaining how Americans came to embrace Enlightenment ideas about human nature, reason, and moral principles in the years preceding 1776.”

Adam Mossoff, Professor of Law, Antonin Scalia Law School, George Mason University

“Since Bernard Bailyn’s and Gordon Wood’s work a half century ago, no study has appeared that takes us on so fruitful a voyage of rethinking, at a deep level, the moral, civic, and cultural causes and meaning of the Revolutionary era.”

Thomas Pangle, Joe R. Long Chair in Democratic Studies, University of Texas at Austin

“Thompson’s stunning new interpretation of the American Revolution restores the Declaration of Independence as the clearest window into Americans’ thoughts regarding their rightful relationship with Great Britain—as well as with each other. Cogent and compelling, his careful analysis of the ideas and events leading to independence amounts to the best intellectual history of the Revolution in years.”

Robert M. S. McDonald


C. Bradley Thompson – Author, Professor, Lecturer

Bradley Thompson is a Professor of Political Science at Clemson University, where he teaches political philosophy. He is also the Executive Director of the Clemson Institute for the Study Capitalism and the founder of the Lyceum Scholars Program.  

During his academic career, he has also been the Garwood Family Professor in the James Madison Program at Princeton University, a John Adams Fellow at the Institute of United States Studies (University of London), and a fellow of the Program in Constitutional Studies at Harvard University.

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Other Written Works by C. Bradley Thompson


An Obituary for an Idea

John Adams & The Spirit of Liberty

Anti-Slavery Political Writings, 1833-1860


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