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Team of Rivals : The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln
Team of Rivals The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln Author:Doris Kearns Goodwin On May 18, 1860, William H. Seward, Salmon P. Chase, Edward Bates, and Abraham Lincoln waited in their hometowns for the results from the Republican National Convention in Chicago. When Lincoln emerged as the victor, his rivals were dismayed and angry. — Throughout the turbulent 1850s, each had energetically sought the presidency as the conflict ... more »over slavery was leading inexorably to secession and civil war. That Lincoln succeeded was the result of a character that had been forged by life experiences that raised him above his more privileged and accomplished rivals. He won because hepossessed an extraordinary ability to put himself in the place of other men, to experience what they were feeling, to understand their motives and desires.
This capacity enabled President Lincoln to bring his disgruntled opponents together, create the most unusual cabinet in history, and marshal their talents to preserve the Union and win the war.« less
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I was interested in this book, but slightly daunted by its size. But I love american history so I picked it up anyway, and I'm so glad I did. It goes so much faster than you'd imagine and is really a fascinating account of the events surrounding Lincoln's nomination election and presidency. Fantastic book!
Doug B. (dougbail) reviewed Team of Rivals : The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln on
Helpful Score: 5
This book got its second wind when President-elect Obama endorsed some of the ideas explored herein. The focus here is on the relations among Abe and his cabinet and the relationships among the cabinet members. There's not much new, but Goodwin, above and beyond being a solid historian, is a great storyteller. There is nothing about this book to dislike and there is much to endorse.
Jennifer W. reviewed Team of Rivals : The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln on
Helpful Score: 4
This book was surprisingly interesting. I expected to get more bogged down in the details, which were extensive, but it kept a pretty good thread throughout. There were probably more details than necessary about the main characters backgrounds, but that helped me keep them straight in my head.
Lincoln's gift for logic over passion and his ability to give up credit to someone else for the sake of expediency and the good of the country, are beautifully portrayed. Overall, a good read that required my full mental focus throughout the whole book. Fascinating.
Team of Rivals is the best inner study of Abraham Lincoln's political abilities and weaknesses. History has crowned him as the greatest president, but often these titles come from myth, timing, and given situation. Lincoln is all the novice in national politics, but this nativity may have made him so strong in this horrible period. Miss Goodwin beautifully records how Lincoln did everything wrong for all the right reasons. You will not only get a much deeper view and feel for Lincoln, but lesser political and military figures are "fleshed out". Team of Rivals will fill in countless gaps on how and why, but it will also really give you a fuller insight on why many view Lincoln the greatest of the American presidents.
I read the part about the nomination of Lincoln by the GOP, it's rarely in other books in any length or depth It sounds like it was a pretty haphazard process (unlike today's managed events), especially since it was only the GOP's 2nd convention. It sounds like Lincoln might have won by stacking the audience (by printing duplicate tickets), and of course, he had the home field advantage.