Inventing the People: The Rise of Popular Sovereignty in England and America

"The best explanation that I have seen for our distinctive combination of faith, hope and naiveté concerning the governmental process." —Michael Kamman, Washington Post

This book makes the provocative case here that America has remained politically stable because the Founding Fathers invented the idea of the American people and used it to impose a government on the new nation. His landmark analysis shows how the notion of popular sovereignty—the unexpected offspring of an older, equally fictional notion, the "divine right of kings"—has worked in our history and remains a political force today.

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By Steven (Belmont, MA) · ★★★☆☆ · June 03, 2012
Morgan's Inventing the People is about fictions of power and the necessity of such in shaping the sovereignty of the people (sovereignty itself being a fiction). To maintain the fiction of divine right in England, the Lords had to let the king know that it was by their authority, not his, that he... ...more
By Maria (Chicago, IL) · ★★★★★ · March 21, 2007
What is American democracy all about, anyway? This book kinda answers this question from the perspective of what sovereignty is and how the answer to that question has both changed and remained the same in the transition from the 'old world' to the 'new'. ...more
By J. (Fort Irwin, CA) · ★★☆☆☆ · April 03, 2008
Fascinating but a little too tedious historical analysis of the sentiments in England that created the cauldron that spawned the Revolutionary War. ...more