Russell Shorto, author of "Revolution Song: A Story of American Freedom," to speak Monday in Albany
Shorto's book offers a new look at the American revolutionary era through the stories of six persons, including a former Albany mayor
ALBANY, NY (11/03/2017) (readMedia)-- Author and journalist Russell Shorto, whose new book, Revolution Song: A Story of American Freedom, slated for release on November 7, will present a reading and discussion on Monday, November 13 at 7 p.m. in the Huxley Theatre, NYS Museum, Cultural Education Center, in Albany.
Free and open to the public, the program is organized by the New York State Education Department's Office of Cultural Education with additional support from the New York State Writers Institute.
In Revolution Song, Shorto takes us back to the founding of the American nation, drawing on diaries, letters and autobiographies to explore six lives, including an Albany man, that cast the era in a fresh new light. Those persons include an African man who freed himself and his family from slavery; a rebellious young woman who abandoned her abusive husband to chart her own course; George Washington, who was admired for his social graces but harshly criticized for his often-disastrous military strategy; and a blacksmith's son from Albany, Abraham Yates Jr., who "seems to have been born with a keen sense of injustice ... a feeling that the 'better classes' were trampling the commoners." Yates trained himself in the law, was a member of the U.S. Continental Congress and later elected mayor of Albany in 1790.
In advance reviews, Revolution Song has been praised as "first-rate intellectual history" by the Wall Street Journal, "literary alchemy" by the Chicago Tribune and "astonishing" by The New York Times.
Shorto, a contributing writer at New York Times Magazine, has previously published Amsterdam: A History of the World's Most Liberal City (2013); Descartes' Bones: A Skeletal History of the Conflict Between Faith and Reason (2008); The Island at the Center of the World: The Epic Story of Dutch Manhattan and the Forgotten Colony that Shaped America (2004), which the New York Times called, "Astonishing.... A book that will permanently alter the way we regard our collective past."; Saints and Madmen: How Pioneering Psychiatrists Are Creating a New Science of the Soul (1999); and Gospel Truth: The New Image of Jesus Emerging from Science and History, and Why It Matters (1997).
On his web site, Shorto describes himself: "I write books of narrative history; I believe history is most meaningful to us when it manifests itself through individuals in conflict."
Books can be purchased at the event and a book signing will follow the talk.
This program is organized by the New York State Education Department's Office of Cultural Education with additional support from the New York State Writers Institute. Registration is recommended for this event. Please call (518) 486-3694 to reserve a seat.
For additional information, contact the Writers Institute at 518-442-5620 or online at www.nyswritersinstitute.org.