In Jefferson's Demons, Michael Knox Beran examines episodes of melancholia in Jefferson's life. In particular, he focuses on the journey Jefferson made to Europe in 1787 to escape the depression that set in due to his tumultuous experience as governor of Virginia following the Revolution and his wife Martha's death. Like Gary Wills' Lincoln at Gettysburg, Beran's revelatory narrative weaves together intellectual history with biography to show how Jefferson embraced the idea of classicism.
"Lots of words, little detail"
People who use the word "buffoon" to describe Donald Trump do so too casually. They overlook the virtuosity of the performance. The yellow hair, the painted face, the histrionic strutting, the naïve egotism - Trump plays the part of Il Capitano, the swaggering soldier of the commedia dell’arte, with a skill the professional actor might well envy. Americans have never seen such a performance, not, at any rate, on the political stage.