By: David Gomez
Staff Writer

 

The death of author, journalist, and polemicist Christopher Hitchens, has left the fight for reason without its strongest and most provocative spokesman. His death gave way to immerse one’s self in the collection of writings he left behind. Among them is the authentic biography of our third president and author of the Declaration of Independence, “Thomas Jefferson: Author of America.”
Hitchens’ biography of this revolutionary man portrays him as a person, unlike many historical texts about the founding fathers. These texts give dull summaries of their role in the American Revolution. In Hitchens’ outstanding piece, we are given a look into Jefferson’s character.

Hitchens acknowledges Jefferson’s presidency as one of the most crucial in American history:

“It is in the highest degree improbable that the United States would exist as we know it today, or even as we knew it a century ago,” said Hitchens in the biography.

With his nation-building chapters such as the Louisiana Purchase, Barbary Wars and the Lewis and Clark expedition to the West, Jefferson began to expand the country. He also organized a system for transportation for all sectors of the economy to accommodate our expansion.

This person, as we come to learn, was a man who felt strongly about science and reason, which is reflected by his credulity toward religion. Regarded as an Enlightenment thinker for his devotion to reason, Jefferson approved of and was inspired to lead this nation down the road of secularism.

           There is, of course, the summary of his political role, but Hitchens reminds us of the grit and grain and how revolutionary our revolution was.

Within the life of a man who showed very little sense of humor, Thomas Jefferson is the author of America in the sense that he authored the Declaration of Independence. However, in this biography we are shown that he is an author in many more respects.