Inventing Freedom: How the English-Speaking Peoples Made the Modern World

Daniel Hannan, Author
Daniel Hannan. HarperCollins/Broadside, $26.99 (416p) ISBN 978-0-06-223173-4
Reviewed on: 11/11/2013
Release date: 11/01/2013
Paperback - 416 pages - 978-0-06-223174-1
MP3 CD - 978-1-4830-0732-8
Compact Disc - 978-1-4830-0731-1
Compact Disc - 978-1-4830-0733-5
Ebook - 416 pages - 978-0-06-223175-8
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Hannan, a well-known conservative writer and politician in Great Britain, tells the story of English contributions to the modern world and the rise of what he calls the "Anglosphere." He determines the English-speaking world to have an exceptional "conception of liberty" that he surveys throughout the book. In clear and informed language Hannan revisits the special contributions of Protestant faith and parliamentary machinery, defending the ownership of property against Marxist arguments. He explains with verve the constitutional "defense against arbitrary government" beginning with the Magna Carta and other legal protections that citizens in Britain, the United States, Canada, and Australia today take for granted. He highlights the community advantages of religious tradition and Episcopalian latitude. Along the way we learn about some unusual things, including the failed 1698 effort of Scotland to establish its own colonial empire. Hannan's book adds up to an entertaining, readable narrative of English triumphs in law, religion, and freedom and celebrates the Anglosphere's "sublime tradition." At the finish, he encourages his readers to act as stewards of their rich legacy. (Dec.)
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