Our Declaration

our declarationToday the Book it Sisters reviewed Our Declaration by Danielle S. Allen.
(Published June 2014, 315 pages)
Book it Sisters’ Grade: B

In just 1,337 words, the Declaration of Independence changed the world, but curiously it is now rarely read from start to finish, much less understood. Unsettled by this, Danielle Allen read the text quietly with students and discovered its animating power. “Bringing the analytical skills of a philosopher, the voice of a gifted memoirist, and the spirit of a soulful humanist to the task, Allen manages to . . . find new meaning in Thomas Jefferson’s understanding of equality,” says Joseph J. Ellis about Our Declaration. Countering much of the popular perception, she restores equality to its rightful place, detailing the Declaration’s case that freedom rests on equality. The contradictions between ideals and reality in a document that perpetuated slavery are also brilliantly tackled by Allen, whose cogently written and beautifully designed book “is must-reading for all who care about the future as well as the origins of America’s democracy” (David M. Kennedy). (less)

Here is our report

Judy BushB-I listened to it on audio and felt it dragged on too long on the first sentence. I got the point, but felt like she beat it with a stick. It made the book less enjoyable. Perhaps it would have been easier to read, where you can go faster when it is repetitive. She sounded so much like she loved the sound of her own voice! I did enjoy the historical parts at the very beginning!
Samantha HarrisonCI think that this book has good information but is written in a format that is difficult to read. Listening to it would be easier than reading. That said, I have only read about 25% but intend to finish it.
Mary HalseyA+++++I love this book. Danielle Allen brings the Declaration of Independence to life for me. I am thankful to have started to learn about this amazing memo of 1,337 words that will continue to teach me and inspire me.
Tricia Gadberry
Suzanne RigbyB-I did not finish the book, but feel like I should go back and slog through it. It was very informative, but the author tended to drag things out and was rather hard to get through. However, the topic itself, with the author's insights, means I would be a better citizen if I was a more informed person. I WILL FINISH IT SOMEDAY!
Denise Link
Cheryl ClowesBI enjoyed learning more about the Declaration of Independence. I thought I knew what it meant but this book really expanded on the meaning and the reasons why this was written. The author analysed every sentence which at times was at times was long. Overall, the book was very informative and well thought out.
Nina Yatsko

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