Emancipating Lincoln: The Proclamation in Text, Context, and Memory

Emancipating Lincoln: The Proclamation in Text, Context, and Memory

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by Harold Holzer
     
 

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ISBN-10: 0674064402

ISBN-13: 9780674064409

Pub. Date: 02/27/2012

Publisher: Harvard

Emancipating Lincoln seeks a new approach to the Emancipation Proclamation, a foundational text of American liberty that in recent years has been subject to woeful misinterpretation. These seventeen hundred words are Lincoln's most important piece of writing, responsible both for his being hailed as the Great Emancipator and for his being pilloried by those

Overview

Emancipating Lincoln seeks a new approach to the Emancipation Proclamation, a foundational text of American liberty that in recent years has been subject to woeful misinterpretation. These seventeen hundred words are Lincoln's most important piece of writing, responsible both for his being hailed as the Great Emancipator and for his being pilloried by those who consider his once-radical effort at emancipation insufficient and half-hearted.

Harold Holzer, an award-winning Lincoln scholar, invites us to examine the impact of Lincoln’s momentous announcement at the moment of its creation, and then as its meaning has changed over time. Using neglected original sources, Holzer uncovers Lincoln’s very modern manipulation of the media—from his promulgation of disinformation to the ways he variously withheld, leaked, and promoted the Proclamation—in order to make his society-altering announcement palatable to America. Examining his agonizing revisions, we learn why a peerless prose writer executed what he regarded as his “greatest act” in leaden language. Turning from word to image, we see the complex responses in American sculpture, painting, and illustration across the past century and a half, as artists sought to criticize, lionize, and profit from Lincoln’s endeavor.

Holzer shows the faults in applying our own standards to Lincoln’s efforts, but also demonstrates how Lincoln’s obfuscations made it nearly impossible to discern his true motives. As we approach the 150th anniversary of the Proclamation, this concise volume is a vivid depiction of the painfully slow march of all Americans—white and black, leaders and constituents—toward freedom.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780674064409
Publisher:
Harvard
Publication date:
02/27/2012
Series:
Nathan I. Huggins Lectures Series, #5
Pages:
256
Sales rank:
1,177,279
Product dimensions:
5.80(w) x 8.30(h) x 0.70(d)

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Emancipating Lincoln: The Proclamation in Text, Context, and Memory 3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Best to read if you are a lincoln admirer. It shows they brillance of Lincoln's use of people and the media to further the cause of freeing the slaves.