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From the Publisher"With acerbic wit and an incomparable grasp of period detail, Summers paints a picture of U.S democracy's late nineteenth-century style."
— American Historical Review
"Perceptively illuminates. . . . Creative and wide-ranging. . . . Places black men at the center of their own self-construction and should not be overlooked in any consideration of African American and masculinity studies."
— American Studies
"With impressive research . . . Summers effectively links [Gilded age politics] into a coherent political universe, illuminated by interesting and often obscure vignettes. . . . An important and provocative book that commands attention and will reward reading."
— Journal of Southern History
"A welcome addition to Gilded Age political historiography. . . . Challenges accepted historiography and provides a lively account of the professionals who dominated US politics at the end of the nineteenth-century."
— Canadian Journal of History/Annales canadiennes d'histoire
Summers examines the American political system of the late nineteenth century with a behind-the-scenes look at the poll taxes, rigged elections, and other electoral shenanigans designed to bring large numbers of voters to the polls but still keep power in the hands of major partisan players.