Educating American Citizens
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When Benjamin Rush called in 1786 for an American education that would transform young men into “republican machines,” he articulated both a Utopian vision and an actual intellectual project.1 A 1760 graduate of the College of New Jersey, Rush was a statesman, physician, and professor of medicine in Philadelphia until his death in 1813. He also served as a friend, mentor, correspondent, and conscience to many of his former classmates, colleagues, and students. Few issues of his day escaped his attention. Yet none engaged him more thoroughly and consistently than the need to create a unified system of republican education in America.2
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