American Creed: Philanthropy and the Rise of Civil Society, 1700-1865

Paperback | July 1, 2005

byKathleen D. McCarthy

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In this bracing history, Kathleen D. McCarthy explores the impact of philanthropy—both giving and volunteerism—on America from 1700 to 1865. What results is a vital reevaluation of public life during the pivotal decades leading up to the Civil War. By exploring the relationships between the market, the state, and the voluntary sphere, McCarthy demonstrates how these elements interacted to change our government—and the course of history. Donors, volunteers, and ‘nonprofit entrepreneurs’ all left a distinctive imprint on American charities, educational patronage, struggles against slavery and racism, female campaigns for equality, and wartime imperatives. In the process, McCarthy uncovers the pivotal role of philanthropy in the story of America’s continuous pursuit to fulfill our founding ideals.
 
“A tour de force. . . . [Modern donors] should all read American Creed to be reminded of the traditional impulses and motives that inspired earlier American philanthropists, large and small, to use their money aggressively in the creation and defense of social justice.”—Mark Dowie, Los Angeles Times
 
“While her riveting history of civil society from the founding to the Civil War focuses on philanthropy and religion, it is laced with keen insights into the place of civil disorder, repression, chivalry, and feminism in the American social order. This is history at its best. A work that is truly pertinent to our times.”—Benjamin Barber
 

 
 

 
 



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In this bracing history, Kathleen D. McCarthy explores the impact of philanthropy—both giving and volunteerism—on America from 1700 to 1865. What results is a vital reevaluation of public life during the pivotal decades leading up to the Civil War. By exploring the relationships between the market, the state, and the voluntary sphere, ...

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In this bracing history, Kathleen D. McCarthy explores the impact of philanthropy-both giving and volunteerism-on America from 1700 to 1865. What results is a vital reevaluation of public life during the pivotal decades leading up to the Civil War. By exploring the relationships between the market, the state, and the voluntary sphere, ...

Kathleen D. McCarthy is professor of history and director of the Center for the Study of Philanthropy at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. She is the author or editor of five other books, including Women's Culture: American Philanthropy and Art, 1830-1930, published by the University of Chicago Press, and Women, P...

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:330 pages, 9 × 6 × 0.9 inPublished:July 1, 2005Publisher:University Of Chicago PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0226562018

ISBN - 13:9780226562018

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Extra Content

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Introduction
Part I: The Rise of Civil Society
Chapter 1: Forging the Creed
Chapter 2:The Feminization of Republicanism
Chapter 3: The Legacy of Disestablishment
Chapter 4: The Geography of Generosity
Chapter 5: Race, Religion, and Reform
Part II: Testing the Faith
Chapter 6: The Jacksonian Backlash
Chapter 7: Civil Society/Civil Disorder
Chapter 8: The Politics of Chivalry
Conclusion: Civil Society and the Civil War
Notes
Bibliography
Index

Editorial Reviews

"A tour de force. . . . [Modern donors] should all read American Creed to be reminded of the traditional impulses and motives that inspired earlier American philanthropists, large and small, to use their money aggressively in the creation and defense of social justice."