Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
John Adams and the Fear of American Oligarchy$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Luke Mayville

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780691171531

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: January 2018

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691171531.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM PRINCETON SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.princeton.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Princeton University Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in PRSO for personal use.date: 27 June 2022

Sympathy for the Rich

Sympathy for the Rich

Chapter:
(p.95) Chapter Three Sympathy for the Rich
Source:
John Adams and the Fear of American Oligarchy
Author(s):

Luke Mayville

Publisher:
Princeton University Press
DOI:10.23943/princeton/9780691171531.003.0004

This chapter turns to the question of how, precisely, John Adams understood wealth to translate into political influence. It shows that Adams was a careful student of the Scottish Enlightenment. More than any other Founding Era American, he engaged with the long tradition of thought that emphasized the psychological bases of social and political power. The fruit of his efforts was the series of essays entitled Discourses on Davila, a work that Adams would describe as the fourth and final volume of his Defence. The chapter draws from Discourses on Davila and other writings an understanding of oligarchic power that traces the political power of wealth not to the capacity of the rich to buy influence but instead to public admiration and sympathy for the rich.

Keywords:   John Adams, wealth, political influence, political power, Scottish Enlightenment, Discourses on Davila

Princeton Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.