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The Barbary Wars

American Independence in the Atlantic World

Frank Lambert

Hill and Wang

The history of America's conflict with the piratical states of the Mediterranean runs through the presidencies of Washington, Adams, Jefferson, and Madison; the adoption of the Constitution; the Quasi-War with France and the War of 1812; the construction of a full-time professional navy; and, most important, the nation's haltering steps toward commercial independence. Frank Lambert's genius is to see in the Barbary Wars the ideal means of capturing the new nation's shaky emergence in the complex context of the Atlantic world.
 
Depicting a time when Britain ruled the seas and France most of Europe, The Barbary Wars proves America's earliest conflict with the Arabic world was always a struggle for economic advantage rather than any clash of cultures or religions.

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The Barbary Wars
ONETHE AMERICAN REVOLUTION CHECKEDIn August 1785, shortly after the Algerine attacks on the Maria and Dauphin, John Adams reflected on the state of American independence from his diplomatic post in London. In a letter to John Jay, he confided, "I find the spirit of the times very different from that which you and I saw ... in the months of November and December, 1783"--that is, just after Britain recognized the United States as a sovereign state. Then expectations were high that the two nations would prosper under reciprocal trade agreements. But alas, a very different climate
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Praise for The Barbary Wars

"For those in search of lessons for today, Lambert's crisp and readable narrative makes clear that it took a combination of patient diplomacy, military force, and good luck to make the Atlantic and Mediterranean worlds safe for U.S. commerce. One suspects that all three factors are needed again now." --Walter Russell Mead, Foreign Affairs
 
"Does an excellent job of placing the Barbary Wars within the context of their time." --The Roanoke Times
"For those in search of lessons for today, Lambert's crisp and readable narrative makes clear that it took a combination of patient diplomacy, military force, and good luck to make the Atlantic and Mediterranean worlds safe for U.S. commerce. One suspects that all three factors are needed again now." --Walter Russell Mead, Foreign Affairs
 
"Does an excellent job of placing the Barbary Wars within the context of their time." --The Roanoke Times

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

  • Frank Lambert

  • Frank Lambert teaches history at Purdue University and is the author of The Founding Fathers and the Place of Religion in America, Inventing the “Great Awakening,” and Pedlar in Divinity: George Whitefield and the Transatlantic Revivals, 1737–1770.
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    The Barbary Wars

    American Independence in the Atlantic World

    Frank Lambert

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    Hill and Wang

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