The Tragedy of Benedict Arnold
“The Tragedy of Benedict Arnold: An American Life.” By Joyce Lee Malcolm
ISBN: 978-1-68177-737-5. Copyright 2018. Hardcover with 336 pages.
This book is a finalist for the 2019 George Washington Prize. The George Washington Prize is one of the nations’ largest and most prestigious literary awards.
Joyce Lee Malcolm’s The Tragedy of Benedict Arnold is a bracing account of America’s most famous traitor. Along with Arnold’s well-known frustrations as a Continental army officer, Malcolm recounts the story of his difficult childhood and his father’s descent into alcoholism and bankruptcy, which fed Arnold’s ambition as an adult. The book also takes a fresh look at Arnold’s lifelong hatred of France, dismissed by many scholars as a pretext for switching sides in 1780, but that Malcolm depicts as a genuine expression of attitudes that Arnold first acquired as a teenager in the Connecticut militia during the French and Indian War. Malcolm displays particular sensitivity in her treatment of the women in Arnold’s life: his heroic mother Hannah Waterman, his sister Hannah, and his second wife Peggy Shippen, whose life was destroyed by her husband’s treason.
A Mount Vernon bookplate, signed by the author, is included with your purchase.