Stacy Schiff

The Revolutionary: Samuel Adams

Thomas Jefferson once asserted that if there were any leader of the Revolution, “Samuel Adams was the man.”  Without him, his cousin John said, “the true history of the American Revolution can never be written.”  A humble hero, a man of sterling integrity and deep faith, fearless Samuel Adams stands among the most successful revolutionaries of all time.  But despite his celebrated status among his contemporaries, he has largely vanished from the record.  Convinced that individuals should themselves determine their own destiny, he led an ingenious, egalitarian campaign of civil resistance.  Organizing boycotts and massaging the news, churning out propaganda under an army of pseudonyms—some of them newly uncovered by Schiff—Adams arguably did more to bring about independence than any other Founder.

[Recorded January 19, 2023]

The Revolutionary: Samuel Adams by Stacy Schiff

History Camp Authors

    America's Summer Roadtrip 2020

      Stacy Schiff

      Stacy Schiff is the author of Véra (Mrs. Vladimir Nabokov), winner of the Pulitzer Prize; Saint-Exupéry, a Pulitzer Prize finalist; A Great Improvisation: Franklin, France, and the Birth of America, winner of the George Washington Book Prize and the Ambassador Book Award; Cleopatra: A Life, A New York Times, Top Ten Book of the Year, winner of the PEN/Jacqueline Bograd Weld Award for Biography, and most recently, The Witches: Salem, 1692. Schiff has received fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and the Center for Scholars and Writers at the New York Public Library. A NYPL Library Lion, a recipient of an Academy Award in Literature from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, named a Chevalier De L’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the French Government, she has contributed to the New York Times, The New Yorker, and the New York Review of Books, among other publications. A member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters, she lives in New York City.

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