David Mccullough's 1776 Provides a Detailed Account Book Review

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David McCullough's 1776 provides a detailed account of the formative events that helped to found the nation of the United States of America. Focusing as it does on the titular year, McCullough's 1776 cannot help but address the social, economic, and political context and climate of the American War of Independence. However, McCullough's main concern is not with the social or philosophical forces that drove the colonies to rebel. Nor is McCullough's main concern with the underlying economic and political climate, or with issues related to gender and social class. McCullough is first and foremost concerned with a play-by-play account of the war itself. In short, 1776 is a military history of the American Revolutionary War. The historical context is clear to most readers who pick up 1776: the colonies have come into their own. While a large contingency of loyalists remain certain that the status quo will be beneficial, an even greater number of citizens of the colonies are convinced that the Crown is outmoded, unnecessary, and a hindrance to life in the New World. It is within this tumultuous and conflicted political and social landscape that war becomes a possibility: war that is symbolically between parent and child.

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1776 is divided into three parts, comprising seven chapters. The first part is entitled "The Siege," which depicts the British Empire and helps the reader understand the weight of rebellion. Part Two is "The Fateful Summer," which comprises two chapters describing the heat of battle. The third and final part of the book is entitled "The Long Retreat" and is essentially the story of the climax and denouement of the Revolutionary War. Readers will already be familiar with the general outline and outcome of the story; what makes McCullough's 1776 stand out is its commitment to detail.

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