Here is an excerpt from Gordon S. Wood’s “Revolutionary Characters” about Alexander Hamilton Rev. Characters Alexander Hamilton. In about 400-500 words I want you to respond the following. I want you to consider Hamilton’s legacy and why the he has always been the lesser, the forgotten of the Revolutionary generation. These questions should help
- Hamilton is an Horatio Alger story. How does he end up in NY and what all had he done by the time most young men today have moved back home and logged a couple of dog years playing Xbox and eating pizza rolls?
- Pg. 133 – 136 is the brunt of what is taught about Hamilton (I also like to note that he got caught up in a messy/slightly creepy scandal. Google Hamilton-Reynolds Affair if you’re interested). Tell me what you understand better after reading this.
- It’s worth noting that despite being the only brilliant, self-made Founder who was always antislavery, he is not remembered like a Jefferson or Washington. What do you think made Hamilton such a polarizing figure?
- Wood has always written that Hamilton is the only Founder who would admire the modern U.S. Why does he believe Hamilton would love it while others like Jefferson and Madison would be appalled at the size and power of our government?
This is huge. If you have never heard of “Hamilton: the musical” pretend that you have.
We will be talking more about him in the coming week. He is interesting for a number of reasons. The most notable of which is that he was born to nothing in the Caribbean and grew up to be an elitist who probably wished the U.S. to have become some version of a monarchy. Also interesting: Thomas Jefferson the exact opposite. Little surprise they didn’t get on well. Hamilton is also the one whose ideas about the country’s future were most realized.
After looking over the information that I have posted about “Hamilton,” tell me what you think about Lin Manuel’s take on Alexander Hamilton. Why do you think people have responded so positively to the musical? What makes it so significant? How does it change or views on a man solely remembered for dropping Aaron Burr?