Catalogue


Team of rivals : the political genius of Abraham Lincoln /
Doris Kearns Goodwin.
imprint
New York : Simon & Schuster, c2012.
description
xix, 916 p. : ill., maps ; 25 cm.
ISBN
1451688091 (pbk.), 9781451688092 (pbk.)
format(s)
Book
Holdings
More Details
imprint
New York : Simon & Schuster, c2012.
isbn
1451688091 (pbk.)
9781451688092 (pbk.)
contents note
pt. 1. The rivals. -- Four men waiting -- The "longing to rise" -- The lure of politics -- "Plunder & conquest" -- The turbulent fifties -- The gathering storm -- Countdown to the nomination -- Showdown in Chicago -- "A man knows his own name" -- "An intensified crossword puzzle" -- "I am now public property" -- pt. 2. Master among men. -- "Mystic chords of memory": Spring 1861 -- "The ball has opened": Summer 1861 -- "I do not intend to be sacrificed": Fall 1861 -- "My boy is gone": Winter 1862 -- "He was simply out-generaled": Spring 1862 -- "We are in the depths": Summer 1862 -- "My word is out": Fall 1862 -- "Fire in the rear": Winter-Spring 1863 -- "The tycoon is in fine whack": Summer 1863 -- "I feel trouble in the air": Summer-Fall 1863 -- "Still in wild water": Fall 1863 -- "There's a man in it!": Winter-Spring 1864 -- "Atlanta is ours": Summer-Fall 1864 -- "A sacred effort": Winter 1864-1865 -- The final weeks: Spring 1865.
abstract
This multiple biography is centered on Lincoln's mastery of men and how it shaped the most significant presidency in the nation's history. Historian Goodwin illuminates Lincoln's political genius, as the one-term congressman rises from obscurity to prevail over three gifted rivals to become president. When Lincoln emerged as the victor at the Republican National Convention, his rivals were dismayed. Throughout the turbulent 1850s, each had energetically sought the presidency as the conflict over slavery led inexorably to civil war. That Lincoln succeeded, Goodwin demonstrates, was because of his extraordinary ability to put himself in the place of other men, to experience what they were feeling, to understand their motives and desires. It was this that enabled Lincoln to bring his disgruntled opponents together, create the most unusual cabinet in history, and marshal their talents to the task of preserving the Union.
catalogue key
8669371
 
Includes bibliographical references (p. 759-880) and index.
A Look Inside
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 2006-10-01:
Noted historian Goodwin attempts the ambitious task of capturing in a single volume the complex relationship between President Abraham Lincoln and his cabinet. Her thesis, as indicated in the subtitle, is that Lincoln possessed the political genius to harness the best effort from erstwhile rivals for the presidency, cabinet members with personal animosities toward each other, and secretaries with different goals and political agendas. By succeeding in welding querulous advisers into a winning team, Lincoln demonstrated an unusual level of political acumen. Lincoln certainly possessed rare political skills, but earlier works have already discussed that fact, revealing the weakness of Goodwin's book. While this work is elegantly written and certainly readable, there is little new information in the text. Instead, Goodwin centers the book on well-known political debates (e.g., concerning the Emancipation Proclamation) and anecdotal accounts of Lincoln and the cabinet, concentrating more on personality clashes than on achieved outcomes. The result is a mass of information that fulfills the book's thesis, but neither appreciably adds to the knowledge of Lincoln's administration nor adds or detracts from Lincoln's legacy. ^BSumming Up: Optional. Undergraduate collections. S. J. Ramold Eastern Michigan University
Appeared in Library Journal on 2006-07-01:
In an 1876 eulogy, Frederick Douglass famously-and foolishly-asserted that "no man can say anything that is new of Abraham Lincoln." Thirteen decades and hundreds of books later, that statement appears no closer to the truth than when Douglass uttered it. Although Lincoln may be the most studied figure in American history, there is no end to new interpretations of the man. Shenk's and Goodwin's engaging new books are impressive demonstrations of that truth. Looking closely at Lincoln's entire life, essayist Shenk examines every scrap of evidence that Lincoln suffered from chronic depression so severe that he twice came close to suicide. He argues that Lincoln not only never conquered his depression but used it to channel his energy into his political work. Shenk's thesis may not convince everyone-including Goodwin, who takes a different view-but both arguments and his evidence are compelling. His is a fascinating story and one enhanced by Richard M. Davidson's forceful reading. Highly recommended. Nearly three times longer than Shenk's book, Goodwin's study covers much of the same ground but concentrates more on Lincoln's presidency. She argues that Lincoln's success in winning the election and in building an exceptionally effective administration lay in his extraordinary ability to empathize with his rivals. Much more than a biography of Lincoln, historian Goodwin's book also closely examines the lives of Lincoln's chief opponents for the Republican nomination-Edward Bates, Salmon P. Chase, and William H. Seward-all of whom appeared better qualified to be President than he. After Lincoln persuaded the three men-as well as other strong figures-to join his cabinet, it was expected that his former rivals would dominate him. Instead, the exact opposite occurred. Suzanne Toren's narration of the unabridged version is fine, but the book's sheer length may demand a greater commitment than many listeners are willing to make. As such, the abridged edition, read by Richard Thomas, may be a better choice for most libraries.-R. Kent Rasmussen, Thousand Oaks, CA (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Appeared in Publishers Weekly on 2005-09-26:
Pulitzer Prize-winner Goodwin (No Ordinary Time) seeks to illuminate what she interprets as a miraculous event: Lincoln's smooth (and, in her view, rather sudden) transition from underwhelming one-term congressman and prairie lawyer to robust chief executive during a time of crisis. Goodwin marvels at Lincoln's ability to co-opt three better-born, better-educated rivals-each of whom had challenged Lincoln for the 1860 Republican nomination. The three were New York senator William H. Seward, who became secretary of state; Ohio senator Salmon P. Chase, who signed on as secretary of the treasury and later was nominated by Lincoln to be chief justice of the Supreme Court; and Missouri's "distinguished elder statesman" Edward Bates, who served as attorney general. This is the "team of rivals" Goodwin's title refers to. The problem with this interpretation is that the metamorphosis of Lincoln to Machiavellian master of men that Goodwin presupposes did not in fact occur overnight only as he approached the grim reality of his presidency. The press had labeled candidate Lincoln "a fourth-rate lecturer, who cannot speak good grammar." But East Coast railroad executives, who had long employed Lincoln at huge prices to defend their interests as attorney and lobbyist, knew better. Lincoln was a shrewd political operator and insider long before he entered the White House-a fact Goodwin underplays. On another front, Goodwin's spotlighting of the president's three former rivals tends to undercut that Lincoln's most essential Cabinet-level contacts were not with Seward, Chase and Bates, but rather with secretaries of war Simon Cameron and Edwin Stanton, and Secretary of the Navy Gideon Welles. These criticisms aside, Goodwin supplies capable biographies of the gentlemen on whom she has chosen to focus, and ably highlights the sometimes tangled dynamics of their "team" within the larger assemblage of Lincoln's full war cabinet. Agent, Amanda Urban. 400,000 first printing; BOMC, History Book Club main selection; film rights to Steven Spielberg/DreamWorld Entertainment. (Nov.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Reviews
Review Quotes
"Splendid, beautifully written....Goodwin has brilliantly woven scores of contemporary accounts...into a fluid narrative....This is the most richly detailed account of the Civil War presidency to appear in many years." -- John Rhodehamel, Los Angeles Times
"Goodwin's narrative abilities...are on full display here, and she does an enthralling job of dramatizing...crucial moments in Lincoln's life....A portrait of Lincoln as a virtuosic politician and managerial genius." -- Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times
"An elegant, incisive study....Goodwin has brilliantly described how Lincoln forged a team that preserved a nation and freed America from the curse of slavery." -- James M. McPherson, The New York Times Book Review
"Endlessly absorbing....[A] lovingly rendered and masterfully fashioned book." -- Jay Winik, The Wall Street Journal
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Summaries
Main Description
Winner of the Lincoln PrizeThis brilliant multiple biography is centered on Lincolns mastery of men and how it shaped the most significant presidency in the nations history.
Main Description
Winner of the Lincoln Prize This brilliant multiple biography is centered on Lincoln's mastery of men and how it shaped the most significant presidency in the nation's history.
Main Description
Soon to be a major motion picture, Lincoln , from Steven Spielberg, with a screenplay by Pulitzer Prize- and Tony-winning writer Tony Kushner, and starring Daniel Day-Lewis as the President and Sally Field as Mary Todd Lincoln. The acclaimed historian Doris Kearns Goodwin illuminates Lincoln's political genius in a highly original work, as the one-term congressman and prairie lawyer rises from obscurity to prevail over three gifted rivals of national reputation to become president. 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. Each had energetically sought the presidency. Lincoln succeeded because he possessed an extraordinary ability to put himself in the place of other men, to experience what they were feeling, to understand their motives. This multiple biography is centered on Lincoln's mastery of men and how it shaped the most significant presidency in the nation's history.
Main Description
This brilliant multiple biography is centered on Lincoln's mastery of men and how it shaped the most significant presidency in the nation's history.

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