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American Inspiration Author Series

Jeffrey Rosen with The pursuit of Happiness

In partnership with:
With support from: Lowell Institute
Date and time
Monday, July 08, 2024

In celebration of the July 4 holiday, join us for a fascinating presentation and discussion of one phrase from the Declaration of Independence, “the pursuit of happiness.”  With Jeffrey Rosen of the National Constitution Center and host of the We the People weekly podcast, we’ll look at what this unalienable right meant to our nation’s Founders, how it defined their lives and became the foundation of our democracy.

In profiles six of our country’s most influential founders—Benjamin Franklin, George Washington, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, and Alexander Hamilton—this new, thought-filled book shows what pursuing happiness meant in their lives. It was a quest for being good, not feeling good, demonstrating a pursuit of lifelong virtue, not short-term pleasure. Among those virtues were the habits of industry, temperance, moderation, and sincerity. Their views were inspired by readings of the classical Greek and Roman moral philosophers. More than an elucidation of the Declaration’s famous phrase; The Pursuit of Happiness is a revelatory journey into the minds of the Founders. Join us to hear from Jeffrey Rosen and gain a deep, rich, and fresh understanding of the foundation of our democracy.

Rosen author photo_credit Bill Fraser.jpg
Jeffrey Rosen is President and CEO of the National Constitution Center, where he hosts We the People, a weekly podcast of constitutional debate. He is also a professor of law at the George Washington University Law School and a contributing editor at The Atlantic.

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