The relationship between politics, economy and ethics has occupied thinkers since Plato. The best example of preoccupation with the moral dimensions of political economies in recent memory is the Cold War. More than a struggle for imperial hegemony between the two super-powers, it was a conflict over which political economy fathered a more moral society. The United States and the Soviet Union clashed over which system benefitted larger segments of their respective society. Every facet of life, from space exploration to sporting events, was used as evidence that one or the other society was inferior. Most importantly, both claimed that their political order gave rise to superior morality. They competed for the hearts and minds of people throughout the globe, and believed that ethical considerations gave them the right and even duty to intervene in the internal affairs of other countries. When President Bush recently declared that the United States had won the Cold War he was not merely pointing out that capitalism proved economically sounder. For Bush, and for most westerners, the triumph of capitalism vindicated its claim to generating greater political freedom and individual virtue. In 1986, in a Harper’s magazine forum on capitalism and morality, conservative columnist Michael Novak claimed that capitalism enhanced the human virtues of personal autonomy, self reliance and the family.1 Novak’s words reflect the way in which most Americans think of their political economy and political culture.


Foreign Policy Founding Father Commercial Policy American Republicanism American Foreign Policy 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Harper’s‘Is there Virtue in Profit: Reconsidering the Morality of Capitalism’, vol. 273 (December 1986), 38.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Joyce Appleby, Capitalism and a New Social Order: The Republican Vision of the 1790s(New York, 1984), 25–50.Google Scholar
  3. 4.
    James A. Field Jr., ‘All Economists, All Diplomats’, in William H. Becker and Samuel F. Wells Jr., eds, Economic and World Power (New York, 1989), 1.Google Scholar
  4. 6.
    Richard K. Mathews, The Radical Politics of Thomas Jefferson: A Revisionist View (Lawrence, Kansas, 1984), 122.Google Scholar
  5. 7.
    James Madison to N. P. Trist, May 1832, Gillard Hunt ed., The Writings of James Madison 9 vols (New York, 1900–1910) IX, 479.Google Scholar
  6. 11.
    Merrill Peterson, ‘Jefferson and Commercial Policy, 1783–1793’, William and Mary Quarterly (hereafter WMQ) Third Series, 22 (1965): 584–610.Google Scholar
  7. Merrill Peterson ed., Thomas Jefferson: A Profile (New York, 1967), 104–34.Google Scholar
  8. Joseph Dorfman, ‘The Economic Philosophy of Thomas Jefferson’, Political Science Quarterly 55 (March 1940): 98–121.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Thomas Mount Cragan, Thomas Jefferson’s Early Attitudes towards Manufacturing, Agriculture, and Commerce’, Ph.D. diss., University of Tennessee, 1965), 14.Google Scholar
  10. 12.
    Felix Gilbert, To the Farewell Address: Ideas of Early American Foreign Policy (Princeton, 1961), 16.Google Scholar
  11. 14.
    Louis Hartz, The Liberal Tradition in America: An Interpretation of American Political Thought since the Revolution (New York, 1955), 6–7, 59–66.Google Scholar
  12. Daniel Boorstin, The Genius of American Politics (Chicago, 1953).Google Scholar
  13. Earlier, Carl Becker emphasized that the founding fathers were influenced ‘most notably’ by John Locke in The Declaration of Independence (New York, 1922), 27.Google Scholar
  14. 15.
    Robert E. Shalhope, ‘Toward a Republican Synthesis: The Emergence of An Understanding of republicanism in American Historiography’, WMQ Third Series, 29 (January 1972): 49–80.Google Scholar
  15. Douglass G. Adair, ‘The Intellectual Origins of Jeffersonian Democracy: Republicanism, the Class Struggle, and the Virtuous Farmer’ (Ph.D. diss., Yale University, 1943).Google Scholar
  16. Gary Wills, Inventing America: Jefferson’s Declaration of Independence (Garden City, NY., 1978).Google Scholar
  17. 16.
    Caroline Robbins, The Eighteenth Century Commonwealthmen (New York, 1959).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. 17.
    Bernard Bailyn, The Ideological Origins of the American Revolution (Cambridge, Mass 1967).Google Scholar
  19. Gordon Wood, The Creation of the American Republic, 1776–1787 (Chapel Hill, 1969).Google Scholar
  20. J. G. A. Pocock, The Machiavellian Moment: Florentine Political Thought and the Atlantic Republican tradition (Princeton, 1975).Google Scholar
  21. Richard Bushman, King and People in Provincial Massachusetts (Chapel Hill, 1985), 3, 245.Google Scholar
  22. John Patrick Diggins, The Lost Soul of American Politics: Virtue, Self Interest and the Foundations of Liberalism (New York, 1984), 360–61.Google Scholar
  23. Thomas Pangle, The Spirit of Modern Republicanism (Chicago, 1988), 29–38Google Scholar
  24. Ralph Lerner, ‘The constitution of the Thinking Revolutionary’, in Richard Beeman ed., Beyond Confederation: Origins of the Constitution and American National Identity (Chapel Hill, 1987), 46–67.Google Scholar
  25. 20.
    J. G. A. Pocock, ‘Virtue and Commerce in the Eighteenth Century’, Journal of Interdisciplinary History, 3 (Fall 1972), 120.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. 21.
    Drew R. McCoy, The Elusive Republic: Political Economy in Jeffersonian America (Chapel Hill, 1980), 67.Google Scholar
  27. 22.
    Lance Banning, The Jeffersonian Persuasion: Evolution of a Party Ideology (Ithaca, 1979), 46.Google Scholar
  28. Rowland Berthoff, ‘Independence and Attachment, Virtue and Interest: From Republican Citizen to Free Enterpriser, 1787–1837’, in Richard Bushman ed., Uprooted Americans: Essays to Honor Oscar Handlin (Boston, 1979), 103.Google Scholar
  29. John Murrin, ‘The Great Inversion, or Court versus Country: A Comparison of the Revolutionary Settlements in England (1688–1721) and America (1776–1816)’, in J. G. A. Pocock ed., Three British Revolutions: 1641, 1688, 1776 (Princeton, 1980), 368–453.Google Scholar
  30. 23.
    J. E. Crowley, This Sheba Self: The Conceptualization of Economic Life in Eighteenth Century America (Baltimore, 1974), 96.Google Scholar
  31. 24.
    James H. Hutson, ‘Country, Court, and Constitution: Antifederalism and the Historians’, WMQ, Third series, 38 (July 1981), 359.Google Scholar
  32. Forrest McDonald, The Presidency of Thomas Jefferson (Lawrence, KS., 1976), 162.Google Scholar
  33. 25.
    Diggins, Lost Soul; idem, ‘Comrades and Citizens: New Mythologies in American Historiography’, American Historical Review (hereafter AHR), 90 (June 1985): 614–38.Google Scholar
  34. Isaac Kramnick, Republicanism and Bourgeois Radicalism: Political Ideology in Late Eighteenth-Century England and America(Ithaca, 1990).Google Scholar
  35. Isaac Kramnick, ‘Republican Revisionism Revisited’, AHR, 87 (June 1982): 629–64.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. John R. Nelson Jr., Liberty and Property: Political Economy and Policymaking in the New Nation, 1789–1812 (Baltimore, 1987).Google Scholar
  37. 29.
    Gordon Wood, ‘Hellfire Politics’, New York Review of BooksXXXII (February 28, 1985), 30.Google Scholar
  38. John Ashworth, ‘The Jeffersonians: Classical republicans or Liberal Capitalists?’, Journal of American Studies 18 (December 1984): 425–35.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Jack P. Greene, ‘Jeffersonian Republicans and the ‘Modernization’ of American Political Consciousness’, Reviews in American History, 13 (March 1985): 37–42.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. 32.
    Michael Sandel, ‘The State and the Soul’, New RepublicJune 10, 1985, 39–40.Google Scholar
  41. 33.
    J. G. A. Pocock, ‘Between Gog and Magog: The Republican Thesis and the Ideologia Americana’, Journal of the History of Ideas (April-June 1987), 339.Google Scholar
  42. 35.
    Paul A. Gilje, The Road to Mobocracy: Popular Disorder in New York City, 1763–1834 (Chapel Hill, 1987)Google Scholar
  43. Sean Wilentz, Chants Democratic: New York City & the Rise of American Working Class, 1788–1850 (New York, 1984).Google Scholar
  44. Steven J. Ross, ‘The Transformation of Republican Ideology’, Journal of the Early Republic 10 (Fall 1990): 323–30.Google Scholar
  45. 36.
    Colin Gordon, ‘Crafting a Usable Past: Consensus, Ideology, and Historians of the American Revolution’, WMQ Third Series, 46 (October 1989): 671–95.Google Scholar
  46. Marc Egnal, A Mighty Empire: The Origins of the American Revolution (Ithaca, 1988).Google Scholar
  47. 37.
    Lance Banning, ‘Jeffersonian Ideology Revisited: Liberal and Classical Ideas in the New Republic’, WMQ Third Series, 43 (January 1986), 3–19.Google Scholar
  48. Isaac Kramnick, ‘The Great National Discussion’: The Discourse of Politics in 1787’, WMQ Third Series, 45 (January 1988): 3–32.Google Scholar
  49. 38.
    Robert E. Shalhope, The Roots of Democracy: American Thought and Culture, 1760–1800 (Boston, 1990), 158.Google Scholar
  50. Cathy D. Matson & Peter S. Onuf, A Union of Interests: Political and Economic Thought in Revolutionary America (Lawrence, KS., 1990), 5.Google Scholar
  51. Michael Liensch, New Order of the Ages: Time, the Constitution, and the Making of Modern American Political Thought (Princeton, 1988).Google Scholar
  52. Steven Dworetz, The Unvarnished Doctrine: Locke Liberalism and the American Revolution (Durham, NC, 1990).Google Scholar
  53. Garret Ward Sheldon, The Political Philosophy of Thomas Jefferson (Baltimore, 1991).Google Scholar
  54. Robert E. Shalhope, ‘In Search of the Elusive Republic’, Reviews in American History 19 (December 1991): 468–73.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  55. 39.
    Steven Watts, The Republic Reborn: War and the Making of Liberal America, 1790–1820(Baltimore, 1987), xvii-xxi, 321.Google Scholar
  56. 41.
    Barbara J. Fields, ‘Ideology and Race in American History’, in J. Morgan Kousser and James M. McPherson eds, Region, Race, and Reconstruction: Essays in Honor of C. Vann Woodward (New York, 1982), 154.Google Scholar
  57. Warren I. Susman, Culture as History: The Transformation of American Society in the Twentieth Century(New York, 1984), 66.Google Scholar
  58. 42.
    John Lewis Gaddis, The United States and the Origins of the Cold War, 1941–1947(New York, 1972).Google Scholar
  59. Michael Hogan, ‘Corporatism: A Positive Appraisal’, Diplomatic History10 (Fall 1986): 363–72.Google Scholar
  60. Emily S. Rosenberg, Spreading the American Dream: American Economic and Cultural Expansion, 1890–1945 (New York, 1982).Google Scholar
  61. 43.
    Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr., The Cycles of American History (Boston, 1986), 129.Google Scholar
  62. 44.
    Richard Van Alstyne, The Rising American Empire(New York, 1960), 6.Google Scholar
  63. 46.
    Prosser Gifford ed., The Treaty of Paris in a Changing States System (Lanham MD., 1985), 6.Google Scholar
  64. William Kirk Woolery, The Relations of Thomas Jefferson to American Foreign Policy, 1783–1793 (Baltimore, 1927), 260.Google Scholar
  65. 49.
    Dexter Perkins, Foreign Policy and the American Spirit (Ithaca, 1957), 11.Google Scholar
  66. Samuel Flagg Bemis, A Diplomatic History of the United States (5th edition, New York, 1964), 208.Google Scholar
  67. 51.
    Samuel Flagg Bemis, The Beginnings of American Foreign Policy (New York, 1965), 54.Google Scholar
  68. Richard B. Morris, The Emerging Nations and the American Revolution (New York, 1970), 220.Google Scholar
  69. 52.
    Niccold Machiavelli, The Discourses, First Book, chapter LIB (trans Luigi Ricci, revised by E. R. P. Vincent, New York, 1940), 247.Google Scholar
  70. 53.
    Gerald Stourzh, Benjamin Franklin and American Foreign Policy (Chicago, 1954).Google Scholar
  71. Roger H. Brown, The Republic in Peril: 1812 (New York, 1964).Google Scholar
  72. 56.
    David Brion Davis, Revolutions: Reflection on American Equality and Foreign Liberations Cambridge, Mass., 1990.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  73. 60.
    Hans J. Morgenthau, In Defense of National Interest: A Critical Examination of American Foreign Policy (New York, 1951), 7.Google Scholar
  74. 61.
    Reginald Horsman, ‘The Dimensions of an ‘Empire for Liberty:’ Expansion and Republicanism, 1775–1825’, Journal of the Early Republic, 9 (Spring 1989), 20.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  75. 62.
    George Kennan, American Diplomacy, 1900–1950 (Chicago, 1951).Google Scholar
  76. 63.
    Charles R. Ritcheson, Aftermath of Revolution: British Policy Toward the United States, 1783–1795 (Dallas, 1969).Google Scholar
  77. 64.
    Bradford Perkins, The First Rapprochement: England and the United States, 1795–1805 (Berkeley, 1955).Google Scholar
  78. Bradford Perkins, Prologue to War, 1805–1812 (Berkeley, 1961).Google Scholar
  79. Bradford Perkins, Castlereagh and Adams (Berkeley, 1964).Google Scholar
  80. 65.
    Norman A. Graebner, Foundations of American Foreign Policy: A Realist Appraisal from Franklin to McKinley (Wilmington, Delaware, 1985), xiv.Google Scholar
  81. C. Vann Woodward, ‘The Age of Reinterpretation’, AHR 66 (October, 1960): 1–19.Google Scholar
  82. 66.
    James H. Hutson, John Adams and the Diplomacy of the American Revolution (Lexington KY., 1980), 12.Google Scholar
  83. 68.
    Alexander DeConde, ‘The French Alliance in Historical Speculation’, in Ronald Hoffman and Peter J. Albert eds, Diplomacy and Revolution: The Franco-American Alliance of 1778 (Charlottesville, 1982), 26.Google Scholar
  84. 69.
    Ronald Hoffman and Peter J. Albert eds, Peace and Pacemakers: The Treaty of 1783 (Charlottesville, 1986), 111.Google Scholar
  85. Ronald Hoffman, A Diplomatic History of the American Revolution (New Haven, 1985).Google Scholar
  86. 70.
    Eric L. McKitrick, ‘Did Jefferson Blunder?’ The New York Review of Books, XXXVII (December 6, 1990), 57.Google Scholar
  87. 71.
    Henry Adams, History of the United States during the Administrations of Thomas Jefferson and James Madison 9 vols (New York, 1889–91,) IV, 464.Google Scholar
  88. Clifford L. Egan, Neither Peace Nor War: Franco-American Relations, 1803–1812 (Baton Rouge, 1983).Google Scholar
  89. 74.
    Walter LaFeber, ‘Foreign Policies of a New Nation: Franklin, Madison and the “Dream of a New Land to Fulfill with People in Self-Control”’ in William Appleman Williams ed., From Colony to Empire: Essays in the history of American Foreign Relations (New York, 1972), 19.Google Scholar
  90. 75.
    Stanley Hoffmann, Duties Beyond Borders: The Limits and Possibilities of Ethical International Politics (Syracuse, 1981).Google Scholar
  91. Michael Joseph Smith, Realist Thought from Weber to Kissinger (Baton Rouge, 1986), especially, 219–26.Google Scholar
  92. 76.
    Kenneth W. Thompson, ‘Unity and Contradiction in Theory and Practice’, in Thompson ed., Diplomacy and Values vol. XII, American Values Projected Abroad (Lanham MD., 1984), 78.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Doron S. Ben-Atar 1993

Authors and Affiliations

  • Doron S. Ben-Atar
    • 1
  1. 1.Yale UniversityUSA

Personalised recommendations