Commonwealth Books of Virginia Publisher to speak at University of Virginia Event

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James Thompson to speak at “Thomas Jefferson: The Man Behind the Myths” forum

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Commonwealth Books of Virginia (CBOV) is pleased to announce owner and author Jim Thompson will present at the 2015 forum, “Thomas Jefferson: The Man Behind the Myths,” to be held at the Jefferson Scholars Foundation at the University of Virginia, 112 Clarke Court, Charlottesville, VA 22903 on Saturday, April 11 from 9 a.m. to 4:40 p.m.

What: “Thomas Jefferson: The Man Behind the Myths”
Where: Jefferson Scholars Foundation, University of Virginia, 112 Clarke Court, Charlottesville, VA 22903
When: Saturday, April 11 from 9 a.m. to 4:40 p.m.

Each of the presentations will be limited to 40 minutes with a 10 minute question and answer period from the audience, which will be conducted by the moderator. Admission to this special event is free and open to the public.

The forum will address misconceptions and misunderstandings concerning Thomas Jefferson. Thomas Jefferson was more than the writer of the Declaration of Independence. He was involved in numerous fields, but is only known for a handful of his accomplishments.

Speakers will explore beyond the narrow perception of America’s third president. Topics to be discussed include Jefferson’s learning process, his conception of history, his notion of the relation between the mind and body, his importance as an architect, the influence on him of the Christian religion and the centrality of morality in his political philosophy.

Commonwealth Books of Virginia’s own James Thompson will address past research that represents Thomas Jefferson as two contradictory people. The first is Professor Peter Onuf’s representation that Jefferson is the iconic father of human rights. In this persona, as Professor Onuf suggests, Jefferson, is a timeless and god-like beacon that guides us toward a more perfect society. The second is Professor Gordon-Reed’s portrayal of a self-indulgent father of his slave’s children. In this persona Jefferson is seemingly a racist who symbolizes what is wrong in American society. Thompson contends that this schizophrenic character is a manufactured bore. Thompson traces how the false persona of the Jeffersonian deity formed and identifies a disqualifying error in Professor Gordon-Reed’s portrait of Jefferson the racist. Thompson’s purpose for doing these things is to clear the way for a new coherent and relevant Thomas Jefferson. In his closing comments, he describes the characteristics of the new Thomas Jefferson.

For all press enquiries or to set up an interview with James Thompson, please contact Katie Stewart, director of marketing and publicity, at kstewart@commonwealthbooks.org.

ABOUT COMMONWEALTH BOOKS OF VIRGINIA

CBOV is where history, philosophy and art meet. We publish books about bright ideas: who created them; how they became influential; who they influenced; and what these individuals did with them. We answer these questions by immersing ourselves in the History of Ideas. We truly get to know who invented the idea. We find out what they looked like, where they lived, how they spent their time and who they associated with. For more information about CBOV, please visit http://www.commonwealthbooks.org.

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