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Today''s students all know what the Declaration of Independence is. One of the things they will discover in Understanding the Declaration of Independence is what a beautiful, powerful piece of writing it is, as they read Thomas Jefferson''s rough draft in its entirety. They may also be surprised to learn that its authors intended the document as something like a press release to let people know that the Continental Congress had voted for independence. They never envisioned the document becoming a cornerstone of our modern, democratic nation. Readers will learn what effect the Declaration of Independence had on life at the time and how it polarized the people. A fascinating discussion on how the document is perceived today and its relevancy is also included.