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Douglas L. Wilson

Author of Honor's Voice

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Douglas L. Wilson has 1 media appearance.

Mar
29
Douglas L. Wilson
Booknotes, Sunday, March 29, 1998
Douglas L. Wilson discusses Honor's Voice.

In HONOR'S VOICE: The Transformation of Abraham Lincoln, a highly original . . . absorbing and first-rate contribution to Lincoln studies" (Kirkus Reviews), historian Douglas L. Wilson exposes the part of our sixteenth president's life we know the least about: his painful early years, when he proposed to no less than four women and sank deep into depression over his failures in love. Called "the best account of the emotional mysteries of a maturing Lincoln" by Garry Wills, HONOR'S VOICE shows how an uneducated boy from the Midwestern backwoods turned himself into a successful lawyer and politician in just 11 years despite crippling personal defeats. Wilson draws on letters, interviews, and other primary sources to depict a politically savvy young man—one who studied English grammar to erase his rural dialect and made shrewd political moves against opponents in battles of prairie politics—whose career was nearly derailed by unhappy entanglements with women, episodes serious enough to make friends fear for his sanity and guard against possible suicide. We see Lincoln's marriage to the aristocratic Mary Todd, often heavily romanticized as a classic American love story, for what it was—a long and torturous struggle over honor and obligation. And learn the truth about Lincoln's first and tragic love affair with Ann Rutledge. "Illuminating not only in what it says about Lincoln but about how history gets written and the way myths are created" (Publishers Weekly), HONOR'S VOICE breaks free of Lincoln legend to offer a very human portrait of one of the nation's most extraordinary leaders. —from the publisher's website (timspalding)… (more)
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