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The Global Lincoln$
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Richard Carwardine and Jay Sexton

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780195379112

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:osobl/9780195379112.001.0001

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“A Total Misconception”

“A Total Misconception”

Lincoln, the Civil War, and the British, 1860–1865

Chapter:
(p.107) 6 “A Total Misconception”
Source:
The Global Lincoln
Author(s):

Lawrence Goldman

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:osobl/9780195379112.003.0006

This chapter examines the British misinterpretation of Abraham Lincoln and the American Civil War. It analyzes why the British misinterpreted the Civil War and why they failed to understand the essence of Lincoln's character and strategy. It suggests that the British responses to the Civil War were influenced largely by social position and class consciousness. This chapter also discusses the view of Lincoln as a pragmatist and “an experimentalist” who found different ways to advance chosen objectives and the importance of the long pamphlet published by the young Leslie Stephen at the beginning of 1865 titled The “Times” on the American War: A Historical Study.

Keywords:   Abraham Lincoln, American Civil War, British response, social position, class consciousness, Leslie Stephen, Time on the American War: A Historical Study, pragmatist, experimentalist

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