Crown of Thorns: Political Martrydom in America from Abraham Lincoln to Martin Luther King, Jr.

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"A provocative treatment of political martyrdom in the United States . . . . a well-crafted, thought-provoking book."
The Lincoln Herald

"In the U.S., dead politicians and controversial reformers have frequently been called martyrs to a cause. But achieving martyrdom is more elusive than simply being jailed, murdered, or rejected in fighting for what one believes. This is the thrust of Naveh's argument, which traces the martyr motif in American political culture since the ...

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Overview

"A provocative treatment of political martyrdom in the United States . . . . a well-crafted, thought-provoking book."
The Lincoln Herald

"In the U.S., dead politicians and controversial reformers have frequently been called martyrs to a cause. But achieving martyrdom is more elusive than simply being jailed, murdered, or rejected in fighting for what one believes. This is the thrust of Naveh's argument, which traces the martyr motif in American political culture since the 1830s."
Choice

"Drawing upon eulogies and obituaries, sermons and biographies, poems and public memorials, Crown of Thorns is most valuable in providing a taxonomy that helps suggest why some public figures sink into oblivion while a very few others belong to the ages."
The Journal of American History

"Naveh makes admirable use of a wide range of primary sources, particularly those drawn from popular rather than elite culture . . . . well written . . . Crown of Thorns should be of some interest to all who are interested in the dynamics of cultural inertia and social change in the United States."
History


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Editorial Reviews

Booknews
Naveh (American history, Tel Aviv U.) applies a religious concept of martyrdom to the context of American political culture and examines the ways in which Americans have depicted certain individuals as national martyrs. She argues that only Martin Luther King Jr. among modern leaders has the potential to turn into a national martyr legend like John Brown or Abraham Lincoln. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780814757659
  • Publisher: New York University Press
  • Publication date: 4/1/1990
  • Pages: 265

Meet the Author

Eyal J. Navah teaches American history at Tel-Aviv University.

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