edited by Ilan Stavans
Whether it’s via their tone, topic, or tenor, certain works just say “America.” Here is one such title, suggested by Erin Carlson Mast, president and CEO of the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library Foundation:
Becoming Americans: Immigrants Tell Their Stories from Jamestown to Today, edited by Ilan Stavans. “Containing letters, diary entries, poems, memoirs, and more from 80 immigrants, this anthology captures a range of immigrant experiences across 400 years,” says Mast. “Taken together, this book reminds us of the complexity and evolution of our nation, that what unites us as Americans is not hereditary nor even geographic. Instead, we are united by, as Abraham Lincoln called it, the ‘electric cord’ that links patriotic hearts and the minds of freedom-loving people everywhere to the self-evident truths enumerated in the Declaration of Independence.”
Patriotic Picks is a monthly feature in partnership with the Washington Independent Review of Books.