In this book seven distinguished historians explain how a national political culture developed in America. A political culture is both the collectivity of a community's values and a mode of behavior-an end as well as a process of obtaining that end which is always changing. Essays by J.G.A. Pocock, Jack Greene, Richard Vernier, Andrew Robertson, Joyce Appleby, Lawrence Goldman, and Rebecca Starr examine issues such as how British institutions and the common law were modified by unique colonial American experiences; how election rituals transformed the American political culture of deference into an expanded, abstract world of electoral opinion knit together by newspapers; how the South developed its own political culture by the end of the eighteenth century that persisted well beyond the Civil War; and more.
Rebecca Starr is senior lecturer at Cheltenham and Gloucester College in the United Kingdom. She is the author of A School for Politics: Commercial Lobbying and Political Culture in Early South Carolina (Johns Hopkins University Press, 1998).