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159. Book Review | Jefferson’s Great Gamble by Charles Cerami [A look at the Louisiana Purchase]

One president and two future presidents worked together on the Louisiana Purchase. This book dives into the story of how they did that, and what it took to coordinate the deal with Napoleon Bonaparte’s France. If you don’t know this story, I recommend you listen to this book review. So, listen below to learn why you need to know this story.

Thomas Jefferson (pictured) was the president during the Louisiana Purchase.
Thomas Jefferson, President during the Louisiana Purchase

Problems of the Louisiana Purchase

The purchase of the Louisiana Territory was no small feat. Nor was there a clear deal to be made. In fact, Napoleon and his forces were planning on occupying the territory at first, squeezing the western Americans out of their best seaport. But, what started as peace negotiations from a point of weakness soon turned into a much different conversation as time went on.

Here’s the size of the Louisiana Territory:

Here's the size of the territory bought in Louisiana Purchase.

“The happy Union of these States is a wonder; their Constitution a miracle; their example the hope of Liberty throughout the world.”

James Madison

Grab your copy of Jefferson’s Great Gamble

Fallout of the Louisiana Purchase

The Monroe doctrine is one of the major developments that came from this deal. This is the idea that America would push any major powers out of our hemisphere. Instead of allowing European and Asian powers to meddle in politics on the Americas, the Monroe Doctrine insists that the United States would lead.

Furthermore, this deal more than doubled the size of America, posing new problems. How will America fill this vast, new expanse? How much land did they actually buy? What’s out there? All these questions and more were dealt with throughout the 19th century. And, the answers were crucial in the shaping of the America we know today.

Enjoy solving today’s problems with the wisdom of the past? Join the Conversation of Our Generation.

163. Book Review | The Analects, The Doctrine Of The Mean, and The Great Learning by Confucius Conversation of Our Generation

I wanted to review the Doctrine of the Mean and the Analects because I think they are full of amazing wisdom. Confucius is, in my opinion, on par with some of the greatest Greek philosophers. Having now read more of Plato’s work, I would compare these works to something like the Symposium or Republic. The question-and-answer style is very engaging and I think makes for a good demonstration of how to discuss ideas. The Wisdom of The Analects This is a readable, short discourse on morality, propriety, and virtue. It is an incredibly insightful work that delves into a range of topics, each one focused on making people better. Also, it has a familiar form of discourse where Confucius’ students ask him questions and he answers. To those who’ve read works by Plato or the Gospels, these techniques will be familiar and, in my opinion, inviting. “The superior man is catholic, not partisan.” -Confucius Although Confucius is from China, his ideas are incredibly similar to what we find in western philosophy. Furthermore, I believe the ideas expressed give a unique perspective since they don’t come from the West. Despite the similarity, there are differences that come out of this work in comparison to one from Aristotle or Thomas Aquinas. But, there is tremendous wisdom in this for anyone who is seeking truth. Grab your copy of The Complete Confucius: The Analects, The Doctrine Of The Mean, and The Great Learning What is the Doctrine of the Mean? The mean is an idea that exists in both in the East and West, and has a number of expressions. Different expressions of the Doctrine of the Mean are due to the fact it’s hard to pin down exactly. Aristotle, Confucius, Lao Tzu, and others have sought to explain the mean. Basically, the mean boils down to how to act morally and ethically. “Learning without thought is labor lost; thought without learning is perilous.” Confucius Enjoy solving today’s problems with the wisdom of the past? Join the Conversation of Our Generation. — This episode is sponsored by · Anchor: The easiest way to make a podcast. https://anchor.fm/app Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/conofourgen/support
  1. 163. Book Review | The Analects, The Doctrine Of The Mean, and The Great Learning by Confucius
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  5. 159. Book Review | Jefferson’s Great Gamble by Charles Cerami [A look at the Louisiana Purchase]

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