Battles for Freedom: The Use and Abuse of American History

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9781784537692: Battles for Freedom: The Use and Abuse of American History

For almost four decades, Eric Foner, one of America's most distinguished historians, has introduced readers of his journalism to unknown or forgotten characters in American history, methodically unearthing the hidden history of American radicalism. In this collection of polemical pieces, Foner expounds on the relevance of Abraham Lincoln's legacy in the age of Obama and on the need for another era of Reconstruction. In addition to articles in which Foner calls out politicians and the powerful for their abuse and misuse of American history, Foner assesses some of his fellow leading historians of the late 20th century, including Richard Hofstadter, Howard Zinn and Eric Hobsbawm. Foner ends with an open letter to Bernie Sanders analysing the great tradition of radicalism that he has spent his career studying and which, he argues, Americans of progressive disposition should seek to celebrate and retrieve

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About the Author:

Eric Foner is a Pulitzer Prize winning historian and DeWitt Clinton Professor of History at Columbia University. He is one of America's leading historians of theAmerican Civil War and Reconstruction Era. His books include The Fiery Trial: Abraham Lincoln and American Slavery; Reconstruction: America's UnfinishedRevolution and Give Me Liberty! An American History.

Review:

"Nothing could be more timely, more needed than this collection of Eric Foner's work. For the depth and breath of his intellect as well as the clarity and precision of his language, he has peers but no superiors. Throughout his career, Professor Foner has enlightened and provoked us to become our better selves."

(Toni Morrison 2016-10-20)

In this collection of essays published in the Nation, Foner, professor of history at Columbia University and Pulitzer Prize winner for The Fiery Trial, combines a deep and nuanced understanding of history with equally acute knowledge of politics to illuminate the abiding issues of the late 20th and early 21st centuries: immigration, civil rights, economics, and nationalism. Foner's clear thinking and sound writing are evident throughout. Highlights include essays on Lincoln's legacy and a series of exceptional works on inequality and the problems of race in America. He discusses how the many Southern state monuments to Confederate icons distort history and criticizes continued public use of the Confederate flag, bolstering his arguments with explanations of their tarnished historical origins. Foner's work has particular resonance when he writes about the effect of the 9/11 attacks, warning that there are dangers to civil liberties when those who criticize the government are branded aliens and traitors. Foner's orientation is liberal, but he doesn't hesitate to criticize President Obama, who he feels embraced outdated economic policies and resisted "genuine change," or to offer suggestions to Bernie Sanders on how to best present his message. These essays span 40 years of American history, but all are timely and wise.

(Publishers Weekly 2017-03-30)

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Book Description I.B.Tauris Co. Ltd., United Kingdom, 2017. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. In thiscollection of polemical pieces, Foner expounds on the relevance ofAbraham Lincoln s legacy in the age of Obama and on the need foranother era of Reconstruction. In addition to articles in which Fonercalls out politicians and the powerful for their abuse and misuseof American history, Foner assesses some of his fellow leadinghistorians of the late 20th century, including Richard Hofstadter,Howard Zinn and Eric Hobsbawm. Foner ends with an open letterto Bernie Sanders analysing the great tradition of radicalism thathe has spent his career studying and which, he argues, Americansof progressive disposition should seek to celebrate and retrieve. Bookseller Inventory # ABZ9781784537692

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