Father Abraham: Lincoln's Relentless Struggle to End Slavery
Lincoln is the single most compelling figure in our history, but also one of the most enigmatic. Was he the Great Emancipator, a man of deep convictions who ended slavery in the United States, or simply a reluctant politician compelled by the force of events to free the slaves? In Father Abraham, Richard Striner offers a fresh portrait of Lincoln, one that helps us make sense of his many contradictions. Striner shows first that, if you examine the speeches that Lincoln made in the 1850s, you will have no doubt of his passion to end slavery. These speeches illuminate the anger, vehemence, and sheer brilliance of candidate Lincoln, who worked up crowds with charismatic fervor as he gathered a national following. But if he felt so passionately about abolition, why did he wait so long to release the Emancipation Proclamation? As Striner points out, politics is the art of the possible, and Lincoln was a consummate politician, a shrewd manipulator who cloaked his visionary ethics in the more pragmatic garb of the coalition-builder. He was at bottom a Machiavellian prince for a democratic age. When secession began, Lincoln used the battle cry of saving the Union to build a power base, one that would eventually break the slave-holding states forever. Striner argues that Lincoln was a rare man indeed: a fervent idealist and a crafty politician with a remarkable gift for strategy. It was the harmonious blend of these two qualities, Striner concludes, that made Lincoln's role in ending slavery so fundamental.
What people are saying - Write a review
We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.
Other editions - View all
abolitionists Abraham Lincoln action amendment American anti-slavery April argued attack August battle began blacks Civil Collected coln command Compromise Confederate Congress Constitution convention December declared Democratic Dred Scott decision election emancipation Emancipation Proclamation enemy equal Eric Foner federal fight Frederick Douglass Free-Soil Free-Soil movement free-state freedom Frémont Grant Halleck Henry Halleck Ibid Illinois institution of slavery Jaffa James Jefferson John July Kansas Kentucky land LaWanda Cox leaders Lee’s army legislature Lincoln wrote Louisiana McClellan McPherson ment militants military Mississippi Missouri moral Nathaniel Banks nation negro North Northern political president presidential principles pro-slavery proclamation race racial Radical Republicans rebel Reconstruction Richmond save the Union secession Senate September Seward slavery slavery issue slaves South Carolina Southern speech Stephen Douglas strategy Sumner Taney Tennessee territory tion troops Unionist United University Press Virginia vote warned Washington white supremacist William York
Antislavery Politics in Antebellum and Civil War America
Thomas G. Mitchell
No preview available - 2007