Ideas, Interest, and Credible Commitments in the American Revolution

37 Pages Posted: 30 Jun 2008

See all articles by Jack N. Rakove

Jack N. Rakove

Stanford University

Andrew R Rutten

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Barry R. Weingast

Stanford University, Department of Political Science

Date Written: February 2000

Abstract

On April 9, 1774, while residents of Boston were still waiting to learn how the British government would respond to the Tea Party of the previous December, John Adams wrote a remarkably accurate political letter to his friend James Warren (now better known as the husband of America's first female historian, Mercy Otis Warren). Adams gazed into the future and judged its course from the recent past. "I am of the same opinion that I have been for many Years", Adams reminded Warren, that there is not Spirit enough on Either side to bring the Question to a compleat Decision and that we shall oscilate like a Pendulum and fluctuate like the Ocean, for many Years to come, and never obtain a compleat Redress of American grievances, nor submit to an absolute Establishment of Parliamentary Authority but be trimming between both as we have been for ten Years past, for more Years to come than you and I shall live. Our Children, may see Revolutions, and be concerned and active in effecting them of which we can form no conception.

Suggested Citation

Rakove, Jack N. and Rutten, Andrew R and Weingast, Barry R., Ideas, Interest, and Credible Commitments in the American Revolution (February 2000). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1153515 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1153515

Jack N. Rakove

Stanford University ( email )

Stanford, CA 94305
United States

Andrew R Rutten

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Barry R. Weingast (Contact Author)

Stanford University, Department of Political Science ( email )

Stanford, CA 94305-6010
United States
650-723-0497 (Phone)
650-723-1808 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://https://www.stanford.edu/group/mcnollgast/cgi-bin/wordpress/

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