March 16, 2015 Relationships Between Men and Women in Early America Are Explored in New Book

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The film “When Harry Met Sally” is a modern-day look at whether close friendships without romance between men and women are possible. In “Founding Friendships: Friendships Between Men and Women in the Early American Republic” (Oxford University Press, 2015), author Cassandra A. Good looks at such relationships as far back as the nation’s founding.

Good will discuss and sign her book, which was researched in the Library of Congress Manuscript Division, on Wednesday, March 25, at noon in the Montpelier Room, located on the sixth floor of the James Madison Memorial Building, 101 Independence Ave. S.E., Washington, D.C. This Books & Beyond event is co-hosted by the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress and the Manuscript Division. It is free and open to the public; no tickets are required.

Close friendships between men and women in the early days of the nation had a profound influence on the formation of America’s political system. Abigail Adams called Thomas Jefferson “one of the choice ones on earth.” George Washington signed a letter to Elizabeth Powel with “I am always yours.” Although such words are often mistaken for romance, a close analysis does not support this view, according to Good.

Good is associate editor of the papers of James Monroe at the University of Mary Washington.

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PR 15-038
ISSN 0731-3527