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Abraham Lincoln: The Careworn, Gentle Face of Wartime Violence
September 22, 2016 @ 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm
Political cartoons, like other popular media, often focused on the person of Abraham Lincoln as a way to think about the inconceivable violence of the Civil War. Depicted as a calm, rational man, slow to anger, physically strong yet ungainly and nonthreatening, Lincoln came to serve as a sign of the controlled and patient wisdom of the north, as opposed to the aggression of the south. As a plain “man of the people”, his was the common sense of the common man. This made the fact that he controlled a capacity for violence unknown to the nation seemingly less troubling. This talk will discuss how the figure of Lincoln mediated discussions of violence during the war.
Registration is required for this program. Register online or call 724.941.9430 #1.
Dr. Elaine Frantz Parsons is an associate professor of history at Duquesne University. Her most recent book, Ku-Klux: The Birth of the Klan in the Reconstruction Era, was published in January, 2016. She is currently working on a labor history of hired violence workers.
This program is offered in conjunction with the exhibit Looking at Lincoln: Political Cartoons from the Civil War, which will be at the library August 30 – September 23 and comes us courtesy of the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History.