Abe by David S. Reynolds audiobook

Abe: Abraham Lincoln in His Times

By David S. Reynolds
Read by Leon Nixon

Penguin Audio
33.55 Hours 1
Format : Digital Download (In Stock)
  • $35.00
    or 2 Credits

    ISBN: 9780593289112

One of the Wall Street Journal's Ten Best Books of the Year A Washington Post Notable Book A Christian Science Monitor and Kirkus Reviews Best Book of 2020 "A marvelous cultural biography that captures Lincoln in all his historical fullness. . . . using popular culture in this way, to fill out the context surrounding Lincoln, is what makes Mr. Reynolds's biography so different and so compelling . . . Where did the sympathy and compassion expressed in [Lincoln's] Second Inaugural—'With malice toward none; with charity for all'—come from? This big, wonderful book provides the richest cultural context to explain that, and everything else, about Lincoln." —Gordon Wood, Wall Street Journal From one of the great historians of nineteenth-century America, a revelatory and enthralling new biography of Lincoln, many years in the making, that brings him to life within his turbulent age David S. Reynolds, author of the Bancroft Prize-winning cultural biography of Walt Whitman and many other iconic works of nineteenth century American history, understands the currents in which Abraham Lincoln swam as well as anyone alive. His magisterial biography Abe is the product of full-body immersion into the riotous tumult of American life in the decades before the Civil War. It was a country growing up and being pulled apart at the same time, with a democratic popular culture that reflected the country's contradictions. Lincoln's lineage was considered auspicious by Emerson, Whitman, and others who prophesied that a new man from the West would emerge to balance North and South. From New England Puritan stock on his father's side and Virginia Cavalier gentry on his mother's, Lincoln was linked by blood to the central conflict of the age. And an enduring theme of his life, Reynolds shows, was his genius for striking a balance between opposing forces. Lacking formal schooling but with an unquenchable thirst for self-improvement, Lincoln had a talent for wrestling and bawdy jokes that made him popular with his peers, even as his appetite for poetry and prodigious gifts for memorization set him apart from them through his childhood, his years as a lawyer, and his entrance into politics. No one can transcend the limitations of their time, and Lincoln was no exception. But what emerges from Reynolds's masterful reckoning is a man who at each stage in his life managed to arrive at a broader view of things than all but his most enlightened peers. As a politician, he moved too slowly for some and too swiftly for many, but he always pushed toward justice while keeping the whole nation in mind. Abe culminates, of course, in the Civil War, the defining test of Lincoln and his beloved country. Reynolds shows us the extraordinary range of cultural knowledge Lincoln drew from as he shaped a vision of true union, transforming, in Martin Luther King Jr.'s words, "the jangling discords of our nation into a beautiful symphony of brotherhood." Abraham Lincoln did not come out of nowhere. But if he was shaped by his times, he also managed at his life's fateful hour to shape them to an extent few could have foreseen. Ultimately, this is the great drama that astonishes us still, and that Abe brings to fresh and vivid life. The measure of that life will always be part of our American education.

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Summary

Summary

#1 Amazon bestseller

New York Times Book Review Editor’s Choice

An Oprah Magazine Pick of Twenty Best Books of Fall

One of the Wall Street Journal's Ten Best Books of the Year A Washington Post Notable Book A Christian Science Monitor and Kirkus Reviews Best Book of 2020 "A marvelous cultural biography that captures Lincoln in all his historical fullness. . . . using popular culture in this way, to fill out the context surrounding Lincoln, is what makes Mr. Reynolds's biography so different and so compelling . . . Where did the sympathy and compassion expressed in [Lincoln's] Second Inaugural—'With malice toward none; with charity for all'—come from? This big, wonderful book provides the richest cultural context to explain that, and everything else, about Lincoln." —Gordon Wood, Wall Street Journal From one of the great historians of nineteenth-century America, a revelatory and enthralling new biography of Lincoln, many years in the making, that brings him to life within his turbulent age David S. Reynolds, author of the Bancroft Prize-winning cultural biography of Walt Whitman and many other iconic works of nineteenth century American history, understands the currents in which Abraham Lincoln swam as well as anyone alive. His magisterial biography Abe is the product of full-body immersion into the riotous tumult of American life in the decades before the Civil War. It was a country growing up and being pulled apart at the same time, with a democratic popular culture that reflected the country's contradictions. Lincoln's lineage was considered auspicious by Emerson, Whitman, and others who prophesied that a new man from the West would emerge to balance North and South. From New England Puritan stock on his father's side and Virginia Cavalier gentry on his mother's, Lincoln was linked by blood to the central conflict of the age. And an enduring theme of his life, Reynolds shows, was his genius for striking a balance between opposing forces. Lacking formal schooling but with an unquenchable thirst for self-improvement, Lincoln had a talent for wrestling and bawdy jokes that made him popular with his peers, even as his appetite for poetry and prodigious gifts for memorization set him apart from them through his childhood, his years as a lawyer, and his entrance into politics. No one can transcend the limitations of their time, and Lincoln was no exception. But what emerges from Reynolds's masterful reckoning is a man who at each stage in his life managed to arrive at a broader view of things than all but his most enlightened peers. As a politician, he moved too slowly for some and too swiftly for many, but he always pushed toward justice while keeping the whole nation in mind. Abe culminates, of course, in the Civil War, the defining test of Lincoln and his beloved country. Reynolds shows us the extraordinary range of cultural knowledge Lincoln drew from as he shaped a vision of true union, transforming, in Martin Luther King Jr.'s words, "the jangling discords of our nation into a beautiful symphony of brotherhood." Abraham Lincoln did not come out of nowhere. But if he was shaped by his times, he also managed at his life's fateful hour to shape them to an extent few could have foreseen. Ultimately, this is the great drama that astonishes us still, and that Abe brings to fresh and vivid life. The measure of that life will always be part of our American education.

Editorial Reviews

Editorial Reviews

“A fine cultural history and biography that is accessible to all readers…consistently fun to read.” Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
“A portrait rich in texture and context.” Publishers Weekly (starred review)
“Reynolds brings the giant to life once more, reminding us of the limitations and the possibilities of politics in a fallen world.” Jon Meacham, #1 New York Times bestselling author
“Teems with insights about Lincoln’s views on abolition, equality, and these disunited states.” O, The Oprah Magazine
“Abe presents a fascinating primer on everyday life in Lincoln’s time.“ Christian Science Monitor
“Excellent.” Chicago Tribune
“A prodigious and lucidly rendered exposition.” New York Times Book Review
“A marvelous cultural biography that captures Lincoln in all his historical fullness…Using popular culture in this way, to fill out the context surrounding Lincoln, is what makes Mr. Reynolds’s biography so different and so compelling.” Wall Street Journal

Reviews

Reviews

Author

Author Bio: David S. Reynolds

Author Bio: David S. Reynolds

David S. Reynolds is a distinguished professor at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. He is the author of numerous acclaimed works of nonfiction, including of Walt Whitman’s America: A Cultural Biography, winner of the Bancroft Prize and the Ambassador Book Award. His Beneath the American Renaissance won the Christian Gauss Award. He is a regular book reviewer for the New York Review of Books, the New York Times Book Review, and the Wall Street Journal.

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Details

Details

Available Formats : Digital Download
Category: Nonfiction/Biography
Runtime: 33.55
Audience: Adult
Language: English