American Spirit by David McCullough – Review
The American Spirit: Who We Are and What We Stand For is a collection of speeches by masterful historian David McCullough. Many of these speeches were college commencement addresses, including one he gave at Hillsdale College.
This collection is best enjoyed as an audio book as the author himself is the narrator. To hear McCullough speak makes you feel like you too were a part of the history of him discussing history. And McCullough loves promoting history.
As a historian, McCullough encourages the study of history. He loves America, loves history, and loves teaching. His speeches spend a great deal of time discussing how important it is to read. To read not only history but literature. Reading history and the classics is the greatest way to acquire wisdom.
One speech about the U.S. Congress was particularly interesting and would make getting a print copy of the book especially worthwhile. In this speech, McCullough mentions countless names of former congressmen and congresswomen. He talks about how interesting these people were and yet we don’t have much information about their lives and what they did. Many of these people produced laws that are part of our current lives, yet we don’t even understand much about Congress itself.
The collection of speeches showcases the American Spirit. Each encourages the listener/reader to dive deeper into learning. To focus on education beyond college. To spend your life always reading and always paying attention to all the wonders to be found in America and beyond.