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The Lincoln-Douglas Debates by Abraham…

The Lincoln-Douglas Debates

by Abraham Lincoln, Stephen A. Douglas (Author)

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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Showing 4 of 4
This is an audio book. It is very well read by the narrators, one of whom is Richard Dreyfus.

This rendition is quite revealing historically. I believe Lincoln came out not quite the hero we thought, and that Stephen Douglas not quite the bad guy as our teachers portrayed him.

The difficulty truly is that each man was playing to the audience, and a modern listener is not going to get the nuance of these debates such that we would understand how each man truly felt.

But the narration is so good and communicates character so well, that it merits an effort to either borrow or buy it (like on Audible.com).

Having said all that, the Quality of the debate between Lincoln and Douglas is one for the ages! ( )
  Benedict8 | Jul 16, 2014 |
A lot of time is spent hashing and re-hashing the issues of the day, and bickering over things that seem down-right trivial today. But the core of the debate is well worth the lulls. Both men make strong arguments. The logic of Douglas’s arguments would find a lot of support today (and do in both the abortion and gay marriage debates). Because of that, Lincoln’s rejoinders are as important now as they were when he fought for abolitionism. ( )
  ebnelson | Jul 31, 2009 |
I really wanted to enjoy this book. This version is the complete unedited (or at least as close as possible) version of what both Lincoln and Douglas said. I expected the Gettysburg Address, instead, most of time was taken up attacking the opponent in a manner that modern-day politicians are all-too familiar with. ( )
  bherner | Oct 1, 2006 |
The Lincoln-Douglas debates are classic and important American history, and guess what -- our society is STILL debaing many of these issues today. ( )
  beau.p.laurence | Jul 24, 2006 |
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» Add other authors (11 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Abraham Lincolnprimary authorall editionscalculated
Douglas, Stephen A.Authormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Angle, Paul M.Editorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Holzer, HaroldEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0060168102, Hardcover)

Published together in their original form for the first time, the seven Lincoln-Douglas debates are presented in their entirety, free of editing and embellishment. By the author of Lincoln on Democracy.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:15:19 -0400)

(see all 7 descriptions)

In the blistering summer of 1858, as America teetered on the brink of disunion, two Illinois politicians seized the nation's attention and gripped it for two extraordinary months. Through the sheer force of their words, personalities, and ideas, Abraham Lincoln and Stephen Douglas transformed a local contest for the U.S. Senate into a watershed national debate on the contentious issue of slavery and, indeed, on the principles upon which this country was founded. Yet what Lincoln and Douglas really said in those seminal debates has long been suppressed. At the time, newspapers were blatantly partisan, and though stenographers took down the speeches word for word, editors and transcribers subsequently "improved" their candidate's remarks while printing his opponent's words, warts and all. What has been reprinted ever since are the "improved," inaccurate versions. Harold Holzer has uncovered unedited texts of the debates, and this book will be the first ever to present all seven of them in their unexpurgated entirety. Besides the first true transcription of the debates, Holzer offers, through an Introduction and extensive notes, crystalline portraits of the combatants - their personalities and bearing, their quirks and foibles. Holzer also casts a brilliant light on the "house divided against itself," showing us an America at once exuberant and deeply uncertain about its future. He provides trenchant evocations of the physical and emotional stages on which the debates were set. We glimpse the feverishly enthusiastic audiences that mobbed the debates. We also witness the exceptional fervor with which the entire country followed them. Lincoln and Douglas galvanized a nation and permanently transformed our national consciousness with the speeches they gave during the summer and fall of 1858. To read the words these men actually spoke in their historic confrontation is an opportunity to witness the apex of American political discourse. Here - for the first time in more than 130 years - are those words. Here - at last - is that opportunity.… (more)

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