Read 3.2 in Mosiac American Sphynx: The Contradiction of Thomas Jefferson by Joseph Ellis and 4.4 Master of Monticello by Henry Wiencek.

Chapters 4 and 5 in Visions should give you some background as well as our class lecture on The Declaration.It has often been debated as to who Jefferson meant when he said All men are created equal. Does this apply to ALL people?
Did he only mean white property owning males?Jeffersons own philosophy of the new nation included a nation of self-sufficient farmers, but he himself was an aristocrat who aligned himself with the finer things in life he had a massive plantation at Monticello and he spent a great deal of time in France as Americas diplomatic representative. AND he was an unapologetic a slave owner. The article talks about this contradiction, and the Declarations message that has been claimed as a supporting document for a variety of opposing causes.

What are your thoughts?
Do you agree that Jeffersons document is too idealistic and utopian? Is this assessment fair? Or do you think Jefferson was a shrewd politician in gaining a larger portion of the population behind the Revolutionary cause by purposely being vague?you do not have to answer these questions specifically, but they are designed to help you think about what you are reading.Any citation style is acceptable, just be consistent.

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