One of the key features of democracy is its emphasis on equality. Among the first to trace the implications of this theme was the French writer and statesman Alexis de Tocqueville (1805–1859). After visiting the United States in 1831–1832, Tocqueville wrote Democracy in America, one of the first—and, some say, still the greatest—explorations of the American democratic experience. When Tocqueville analyzed American democracy, moreover, he did so with an eye to the implications of democracy for Europe as well.