Friday, March 28, 2008

How Not To Write American History (Murray Rothbard)

Murray Rothbard on a typical history book that's woefully lacking of anything useful:

This is, to put it bluntly, a poor book. Any work on American history, even an "overview" (to use a favorite and perhaps overused term of DeHuszar's), has certain tasks that it must perform and standards to which it must cleave. In the first place, the factual material must be rich and not skimpy; the reader must get an idea of the lavish tapestry of American history, and he must get a full and comprehensive picture.

Most of the detailed critique below is devoted to protestations about the great amount of important material that the author has left out of the narrative. Just to pick an isolated instance, I do not think much of a text on American history that does not so much as mention Senator Thomas Hart ("Old Bullion") Benton.

Read the rest, and see Rothbard's own history book set, available on audio for free.

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