Catalogue


From abolition to rights for all : the making of a reform community in the nineteenth century /
John T. Cumbler.
imprint
Philadelphia : University of Pennsylvania Press, c2008.
description
xi, 238 p. ; 24 cm.
ISBN
081224026X, 9780812240269
format(s)
Book
Holdings
More Details
imprint
Philadelphia : University of Pennsylvania Press, c2008.
isbn
081224026X
9780812240269
catalogue key
6350245
 
Includes bibliographical references (p. [165]-225) and index.
A Look Inside
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 2008-10-01:
Cumbler (Univ. of Louisville) places the activities of a group of mainly white Boston abolitionist leaders within a broader social movement that continued without interruption after the Civil War. Opposition to slavery on the basis of natural rights and an activist government provided a philosophical platform large enough to encompass issues such as suffrage, public health, housing, and clean water supply, allowing this generation to shape a proto-Progressive agenda. Even before the war, abolitionism was for some supporters an extension of already developed social concerns, a point made through the central narratives of Julia Ward Howe and, most convincingly, Henry Ingersoll Bowditch; stories of other well-known abolitionists support a pattern of wide-ranging activism. Comprehensive primary research reconstructs an enduring postwar commitment. The book less successfully contrasts the goals of "old reformers" with those of the succeeding Progressive Era, which Cumbler briefly characterizes in one-dimensional, outdated terms, particularly when discussing his changing-of-the-guard issue, civil service reform. References to European models adapted by US reformers complement scholarship on transatlantic social politics. Overall, this study demonstrates the breadth and continuity of 19th-century reform in the US, all too easily obscured by the cataclysm of civil war. Summing Up: Recommended. All levels/libraries. A. E. Krulikowski West Chester University
Reviews
Review Quotes
"A fine book that should be high on the reading list of anyone interested in American social movements."- Journal of Social History
"This study demonstrates the breadth and continuity of nineteenth-century reform in the U.S., all too easily obscured by the cataclysm of civil war."- Choice
"This study demonstrates the breadth and continuity of nineteenth-century reform in the U.S., all too easily obscured by the cataclysm of civil war."--Choice
This item was reviewed in:
Choice, October 2008
To find out how to look for other reviews, please see our guides to finding book reviews in the Sciences or Social Sciences and Humanities.
Summaries
Main Description
The Civil War was not the end, as is often thought, of reformist activism among abolitionists. After emancipation was achieved, they broadened their struggle to pursue equal rights for women, state medicine, workers' rights, fair wages, immigrants' rights, care of the poor, and a right to decent housing and a healthy environment. Focusing on the work of a key group of activists from 1835 to the dawn of the twentieth century, From Abolition to Rights for Allinvestigates how reformers, linked together and radicalized by their shared experiences in the abolitionist struggle, articulated a core natural rights ideology and molded it into a rationale for successive reform movements. The book follows the abolitionists' struggles and successes in organizing a social movement. For a time after the Civil War these reformers occupied major positions of power, only to be rebuffed in the later years of the nineteenth century as the larger society rejected their inclusive understanding of natural rights. The narrative of perseverance among this small group would be a continuing source of inspiration for reform. The pattern they established-local organization, expansive vision, and eventual challenge by powerful business interests and individuals-would be mirrored shortly thereafter by Progressives.
Main Description
The Civil War was not the end, as is often thought, of reformist activism among abolitionists. After emancipation was achieved, they broadened their struggle to pursue equal rights for women, state medicine, workers' rights, fair wages, immigrants' rights, care of the poor, and a right to decent housing and a healthy environment. Focusing on the work of a key group of activists from 1835 to the dawn of the twentieth century,From Abolition to Rights for Allinvestigates how reformers, linked together and radicalized by their shared experiences in the abolitionist struggle, articulated a core natural rights ideology and molded it into a rationale for successive reform movements. The book follows the abolitionists' struggles and successes in organizing a social movement. For a time after the Civil War these reformers occupied major positions of power, only to be rebuffed in the later years of the nineteenth century as the larger society rejected their inclusive understanding of natural rights. The narrative of perseverance among this small group would be a continuing source of inspiration for reform. The pattern they established--local organization, expansive vision, and eventual challenge by powerful business interests and individuals--would be mirrored shortly thereafter by Progressives.
Table of Contents
Prefacep. ix
Introduction: "Till Every Yoke Is Broken"p. 1
The People and the Timesp. 15
"With Other Good Souls"p. 31
"All the Great Men and Men of Respectability Stood Aloof"p. 56
"To Do Battle for Justice and the Oppressed"p. 68
"The Issue Is Universal Justice"p. 87
"Blessed Are They Who When Some Great Cause...Calls Them...Come"p. 99
Bringing Together the Professional and the Politicalp. 118
"Public Society Owes Perfect Protection": The State and the People's Rightsp. 136
"A Relative Right"p. 150
List of Abbreviationsp. 163
Notesp. 165
Indexp. 227
Acknowledgmentsp. 237
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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