An interpretive history of the processes of social change in the early years of the new republic. It concentrates on the nation's expansion, which saw the rapid growth of rural societies based on family labor, slavery, and wage labor, but also an intensification of economic activity that fostered the growth of commerce, towns, and manufacturing; applied new technologies to transport and communications; and initiated mass immigration from overseas. The character of the social relationships between groups and individuals that were shaped by, and helped shape, these events is the subject of Clark's book.
Christopher Clark is professor of history at the University of Connecticut and author of The Communitarian Movement and The Roots of Rural Capitalism. Born in England, he studied at the University of Warwick and did his graduate work at Harvard University. He has received the Frederick Jackson Turner Award of the Organization of American Historians. He lives in Storrs, Connecticut.