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Publisher's Summary

"By necessity, by proclivity, by delight," Ralph Waldo Emerson said in 1876, "we all quote." But often the phrases that fall most readily from our collective lips - like "fire when ready", "speak softly and carry a big stick", or "nice guys finish last" - are those whose origins and true meanings we have ceased to consider.

Restoring three-dimensionality to more than 50 of these American sayings, Tippecanoe and Tyler Too turns clichés back into history by telling the life stories of the words that have served as our most powerful battle cries, rallying points, laments, and inspirations. In individual entries on slogans and catchphrases from the early 17th to the late 20th century, Jan Van Meter reveals that each one is a living, malleable entity that has profoundly shaped and continues to influence our public culture.

From John Winthrop's "We shall be as a city upon a hill" and the 1840 Log Cabin Campaign's "Tippecanoe and Tyler Too", to Martin Luther King Jr.'s "I have a dream" and Ronald Reagan's "Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall," each of Van Meter's selections emerges as a memory device for a larger political or cultural story. Taken together in Van Meter's able hands, these famous slogans and catchphrases give voice to our common history, even as we argue about where it should lead us.

©2009 Jan R. Van Meter; (P)2009 Audible, Inc.

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Tippecanoe and Tyler Too review

If you enjoy American history, this is one book for you. The narrator has an excellent and interesting voice and keeps the listener's attention.

Each section isn't too lengthy that the listener loses interest. Each slogan is complete and makes a conversation piece with which you can amuse your children or, in my case, grandchildren. They can increase their interest and knowledge in American history.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

A Great Way to Learn US History and Remembered It

I have heard many of the slogans but did not know the story behind them. I have probably tripled my US history knowledge in listening to this one book.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Jon
  • Oceanside, CA, USA
  • 12-30-09

Long but informative

This book was very long and a bit dry. I did find it informative.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful