[PW] Foreign opinions of levels of learning in 18th-19th century America?

T.F. Mills phasco at earthlink.net
Wed Feb 24 21:31:44 PST 2016


On 24 Feb 2016 at 21:08, Kevin O'Kelly wrote:

> [Americans] were observed by strangers to be better instructed and
> more intelligent than people of the same rank generally are in other
> countries."
> 
> I would like to know what if any evidence there is for this from sources
> other than Franklin.

The eminent historian Richard Hofstadter paints a bleaker picture in his 1964 
Pulitzer-prize-winning "Anti-Intellectualism in American Life."  He explains the social, religious, 
cultural, business forces that made progress weak even if there were pockets of intellect.   
(Three chapters cover the history of education.)  Hofstadter, however, does not attempt a 
comparative study with other countries.

T.F. Mills 
(Colorado, USA)




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