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Historians on Hamilton

Is Hamilton as revolutionary as its creators and many commentators claim Perfect for students teachers theatre fans hip hop heads and history buffs alike these short and lively essays examine why Hamilton became an Obama era sensation and consider its continued relevance in the age of Trump Whether you are a fan or a skeptic you will come away from this collection with a new appreciation for the meaning and importance of the Hamilton phenomeno. This book comprises 15 essays by academic historians reflecting on Hamilton the musicalThe overall point of the essays is not to bash the musical but to provide additional historical context which the majority of the musical s audience probably don t haveOne idea that ties together a lot of the criticism is the idea of Founders Chic the tendency of the most best selling biographies of founding fathers to portray them as some sort of demigods John Adams by McCullough and Washington by Chernow are 2 recent best selling examplesThe problem is that Founders Chic works tend to ignore or minimize things which don t fit into their heroic narrative and Hamilton the musical definitely falls in this tradition as do most current popular interpretations of the period and one of the threads in several of the essays is pointing out how various aspects of this play outOf the 15 essays I particularly enjoyed the following1 From Ron Chernow s Alexander Hamilton to HamiltonAn American Musical by William HogelandThis essay examines how Chernow s book influenced the musical and argues that many of the criticisms of the historical lacunae of the musical are the fault of the book2 Hamilton as Founders Chic A Neo Federalist Antislavery Usable Past by David Waldstreicher and Jeffrey L PasleyThis examines the traces the history of Founders Chic and analyzes the tropes of the genre3 From The Black Crook to Hamilton A Brief History of Hot Tickets on Broadway by Elizabeth I WollmanI enjoyed this historical survey of hot tickets on Broadway It particularly focuses on the shows that revolutionized Broadway and points out how Hamilton fits into the history of Broadway4 Hamilton A New American Civic Myth by Renee C RomanoThis essay examines why Hamilton has been so popular with American conservatives despite its ostensibly liberal credentials The conclusion is that Hamilton has plenty of aspects that conservatives can appreciate and that it doesn t put forward an interpretation of history that would make American conservatives particularly uncomfortableAs I said none of this is to bash Hamilton as a musical in fact many of the essay writers are big fans but I really enjoyed getting the additional context from professional historians

review ✓ PDF, eBook or Kindle ePUB free Ó Renee C. Romano

America has gone Hamilton crazy Lin Manuel Miranda’s Tony winning musical has spawned sold out performances a triple platinum cast album and a score so catchy that it is being used to teach US history in classrooms across the country But just how historically accurate is Hamilton And how is the show itself making history Historians on Hamilton brings together a collection of top scholars to explain the Hamilton phenomenon and explore what it. Due to the essay style of the book certain elements were a little repetitive as each contributor noted similar things Mostly academics commenting on how the real history compares how the show fits into the larger collection of blockbuster Broadway theater and its connection to modern social media Well written and taught me a few new things However I wish they would have had a public historian comment on what it means to the industry and not only relying on academics

Renee C. Romano Ó 5 Free read

Might mean for our understanding of America’s history The contributors examine what the musical got right what it got wrong and why it matters Does Hamilton’s hip hop take on the Founding Fathers misrepresent our nation’s past or does it offer a bold positive vision for our nation’s future Can a musical so unabashedly contemporary and deliberately anachronistic still communicate historical truths about American culture and politics And. There are a lot of things to admire about this collection voices from theatre historians contemporary historians and historians of 18th c America the absence of a critical orthodoxy that allows differing opinions to rise from various contributors the persistent presence of race as an analytic without eliminating other analyses gender capital celebrity the logical framing of the essays themselves After a gracious preview from the editors I used the collection in my American Drama course assigning each essay to a student plus Phillip Goldfarb Styrt s insightful analysis in the Spring 18 issue of Modern Drama to present to the class a sort of symposium by proxy The fact that the essays were accessible to advanced undergrads without dumbing down the content is a particular editorial feat in curating outstanding authors the theatre historians represented are top of the field and guiding drafts toward a consistent tone The fact that this discussion continued for a week after the assignment is testament to the collection s effectiveness That fact that as a scholar of biographical performance I wish I had written for it might be testament that it s a scholarly conversation worth joiningAre there overlaps in argument Sure Are there still gaps Of course but the critical discussion on this show is likely to continue for a long time If you re interested in that discussion then this book will be indispensable


10 thoughts on “Historians on Hamilton

  1. says:

    As a fan of the Broadway show Hamilton I've actually been looking forward to seeing some legitimate criticism of the show from a historical perspective It's always interesting to see the opposite side to uestion t

  2. says:

    A series of essays from different professional authors history art sociology etc all about the broadway musical

  3. says:

    Due to the essay style of the book certain elements were a little repetitive as each contributor noted similar things Mostly academics commenting on how the real history compares how the show fits into the larger collection of blockbuster Broadway theater and its connection to modern social media Well written and taught me a few new things However I wish they would have had a public historian comment on what it means

  4. says:

    This is an excellent collection of essays for fans of Hamilton who want a critical look at their favorite show Th

  5. says:

    There are a lot of things to admire about this collection voices from theatre historians contemporary historians and historians of 18th c America; the absence of a critical orthodoxy that allows differing opinions to rise from various contributors; the persistent presence of race as an analytic without eliminating other analyses gender capital celebrity; the logical framing of the essays themselves After a g

  6. says:

    For the record I am a mad 'Hamilton' fan who has for the last almost three years been besotted with Lin Manuel Miranda's magnum opus so this review is born out of a desire to delve further into the cultural phenomenon of t

  7. says:

    A wonderful book of essays about the Hamilton musical some dealing with the historical accuracy of the play others looking at the interest the play has stirred up with people wanting to learn about the founding of our country and a bit of Broadway history about how musicals have changed over the years The essays were interesting

  8. says:

    TLDR If you like Hamilton you must read this book PeriodI recently saw Hamilton for the first time and enjoyed it very much At the same time certain uestions and irritations kept distracting me during the show How accurate

  9. says:

    This book comprises 15 essays by academic historians reflecting on Hamilton the musicalThe overall point of the essays is not to bash the musical but to provide additional historical context which the majority of the musical's audience probab

  10. says:

    I love musical theater and early American history so when I heard about Hamilton I was super excited I saw it in November of 2015 and adored it listening to it nonstop even as a Jeffersonian I loved it And as I listened to itlook I love the sh

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