This collection of diverse readings focuses on some of the forces, ideologies, people, and experiences that have helped forge today's distinctive American character. Editor John R. M. Wilson presents the concept of national character as consisting of useful generalizations that elucidate the ways in which a nation or nationality is unique. National character can help explain the tendency of people living in one nation to behave and believe in certain ways that differ from people in other nations. This collection suggests that Americans have defined themselves not only by what they are, but also by what they are not. This negative component--for example, Americans are anti-communist--is an important part of the American character. Volume II: This anthology enables readers to explore various subjects such as the debate over multiculturalism in the 1990s, the mythology of the American cowboy, and various other topics not generally treated in depth in history textbooks. The selections include both classic treatments by giants in the historical profession and new interpretations and findings by young scholars in various sub-fields of history. All explore topics that shed light on the American character. Selections include: Eric Foner, "The New View of Reconstruction" Catherine McNicol Stock. "Rural Radicals" Barbara Tuchman, "The First Anti-Imperialists" William Leuchtenburg, "The Achievement of the New Deal" Sara Evans, "Cracks in the Mold" Stephen B. Oates, "Trumpet of Conscience" John Steele Gordon, "The American Environment"Wilson, John R. M. is the author of 'Forging the American Character Readings in United States History Since 1865', published 2002 under ISBN 9780130977663 and ISBN 0130977667.