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In 1831 Alexis de Tocqueville traveled through the United States to investigate the country's prison system. Instead, he wrote this study of democracy in its infancy--a study that embraces America's history, geography, politics, legal system, economy, and culture. Here are glimpses of a vanished America, from town meetings in New England to Indians in the frontier territories of Alabama. Many of Tocqueville's observations still hold true: the mixed advantages of free press, the strained relations among races, and the threats posed to democracies by consumerism and corruption. This volume, part of the two-volume edition of the Philips Bradley translation, is considered the definitive English version. It presents Tocqueville's original text, complete with footnotes, editorial notes, and bibliographies. With a new Introduction by Daniel Boorstin.