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Thomas Paine : Collected Writings : Common Sense / The Crisis / Rights of Man / The Age of Reason / Pamphlets, Articles, and Letters (Library of America)

Thomas Paine : Collected Writings : Common Sense / The Crisis / Rights o...

Thomas Paine and Eric Foner

Letters, articles, and pamphlets—some previously unavailable—with a focus on Paine's American career.

Thomas Paine, the spokesman for the birth of the American nation, had a talent for cutting away distractions in an argument and making his readers receptive to previously unacceptable ideas. He, maybe more than any other person, was the catalyst that gave Colonial America the will to transform itself. From Common Sense:

...a long habit of not thinking a thing wrong, gives it a superficial appearance of being right, and raises at first a formidable outcry in defence of custom. But the tumult soon subsides. Time makes more converts than reason.

225 years later few Americans have an appreciation of their own history and the darkness the Western world had wallowed in for 1,000 years after the disposition of Rome and Greece.

The cause of America is in a great measure the...
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