Wood argues that although Paine was influential in shaping the entire philosophy of his time period, he has been largely ignored by Americans. While he was not one of the founding fathers in that he did not directly contribute to the writing of the Constitution, he was an enormously influential thinker who influenced the entire mindset of the period, revealing a (for the time) radical mindset that went completely against the monarchical thinking of the period. Wood specifically says that "Common Sense is the most radical and important pamphlet written in the American Revolution and one of the most brilliant ever written in the English language". It made Paine a representative of the entire revolutionary movement because "it did express more boldly and eloquently than any other writing what many of them had already come to think about America's tie to the British Crown". Despite Paine's literary and philosophical successes, however, he lacked the connections and friendships with the established aristocracy of the time, which helped contribute to the fact that he was largely forgotten and dismissed by America after a whole even after all he had done to foster freedom and independence.
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