- The Book
- The Editor
- Thomas Jefferson
Praise for Light and Liberty
Louis S. Auchincloss
"Eric Petersen, a New York attorney who has for many years made an almost daily habit of studying the vast literary output of our third president and author of the Declaration of Independence, has now culled from it a volume of essays, each stitched seamlessly together from paragraphs taken from many sources (letters, addresses, state papers), but all, of course, in Jefferson’s own words, and expressing Jefferson’s ideas on different subjects under such Emersonian titles as “Happiness”, “Humility”, “Self-discipline” etc. It is an extraordinary accomplishment, for one would think that Jefferson himself had put together each essay as a considered unit. And in a way he has, for the pieces are joined by the unity of a great mind and a great humanitarian. It has been said that there were many sides to Jefferson’s remarkable personality, but there was certainly a consistent common denominator in his highest thoughts, and Petersen has caught it.
"That Jefferson’s ideas are given by themselves, without reference to the action or incident which may have generated them, gives a timelessness and cohesion to the whole that affords an illuminating penetration into the mind of one of our greatest American thinkers. More than ever in this post World Trade Center world do we need this kind of spiritual lift."
Louis Auchincloss was one of America’s most distinguished and versatile writers. He authored more than 50 works of fiction, criticism, social history and short stories over his long literary career. He was a former President of the American Academy of Arts and Letters.