The other night I was chatting with a young man and the issue of the cultural divisions in the country came up. He mentioned he liked Albion’s Seed a great deal as explaining much of our divisions. I exclaimed that that was a book I’d been intending to read since Colin Woodard cites it abundantly in his American Nations, which I see as accomplishing so much in limning the boundaries of our divisions, political and cultural. So I asked a friend if he had heard of it b/c I’d sent several of my own pieces on the topic to him as well as some pertinent articles and he replied that both he and his wife were reading Albion’s Seed at this time. Yttyfaaq! Coincidence!
I picked up Ira Berlin’s Generations of Captivity. Half-way through it, I am chagrined to see marginalia which indicate I’ve read the book. His Many Thousands Gone is the best intro to slavery in the U.S. I’ve read and I have 2 other of his books. The outlines of the Fischer (Albion’s Seed ) book are there in Berlin’s delineation of slavery’s history by region (North, Chesapeake, Low Country, Interior South, West). This is in such contrast to my early youth when I had little interest in American history. Now I’m captured by it.