James Madison

A Son of Virginia and a Founder of the Nation
Author(s): Jeff Broadwater
Original Publish Date: Nov 19, 2012
eAudio - unabridged
Audio (9.38 hours)
Product Number: Z100094349
Released: Jun 16, 2015
Business Term: Purchase
ISBN: #9781481592918
Narrator/s: Johnny Heller
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James Madison is remembered primarily as a systematic political theorist, but this bookish and unassuming man was also a practical politician who strove for balance in an age of revolution. In this biography, Jeff Broadwater focuses on Madison's role in the battle for religious freedom in Virginia, his contributions to the adoption of the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, his place in the evolution of the party system, his relationship with Dolley Madison, his performance as a wartime commander-in-chief, and his views on slavery. From Broadwater's perspective, no single figure can tell us more about the origins of the American republic than our fourth president. In these pages, Madison emerges as a remarkably resilient politician and an unlikely wartime leader who survived repeated setbacks in the War of 1812 with his popularity intact. Yet Broadwater shows that, despite his keen intelligence, the more Madison thought about one issue-race-the more muddled his thinking became, and his conviction that white prejudices were intractable prevented him from fully grappling with the dilemma of American slavery.

Professional reviews

"With 2012's fiscal cliff fresh in listeners' memories, many of the issues that President James Madison debated could seem current. As a leader and thinker in a new republic, he considered the impact of a national debt, checks and balances in the Constitution, and various forms of balloting. Johnny Heller's straightforward narration gives listeners the opportunity to focus on Madison's ideas. Broadwater doesn't stay away from Madison's weaknesses, particularly his contradictions in dealing with the issue of slavery. He presents a portrait of a president whose "constitutional thought" still merits a listen from anyone interested in our nation's government. J.A.S. (c) AudioFile 2013, Portland, Maine"