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John Adams: Thoughts on Government | Primary Source Close Reads Explained

What is the purpose of government? In this episode of Primary Source Close Reads Explained, Kirk examines John Adams’ ‘Thoughts on Government,’ written in April 1776, just before the Declaration of Independence.

In it, Adams explores what type of government is best and how happiness can be ensured through it. According to Adams, how do we form the best kind of republic? What is the key to its success? Were these ideals on government included in the Articles of Confederation, or the US Constitution?

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