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Book Review
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Oates, Stephen B. — Lincoln: The Man Behind the Myths (Book Review Sample)

*** work sited at the 4th page and footnotes are required for this book review BASIC TIPS FOR WRITING YOUR REVIEW: 1. Your discussion MUST include the following elements: - Author's purpose: why did the author choose to write a book on this topic? Did the author accomplish his/her purpose? - Central thesis: what is the central theme, main point, or unifying idea around which the book is written? How does it relate to the purpose? How does fit within our period of study? Does the author clearly spell out his/her thesis and fully discuss and support it? - Historical significance: why/how is the subject of your book important to the study of U.S. history? What kind of evidence/examples does the author give to support his discussion? - Historical Context: you MUST consult other scholars and determine how they: (1) see the same material and (2) how their thinking agrees, disagrees, differs from your author's view. Additionally, students should review and compare the subject matter of their book to what is said in the course\'s textbook. In addition to searching the library, students should also search the internet for the topic and the views of other scholars and sources. 2. A book review is an essay with standard essay organization. 3. Describe the book. Readers want to know such things as the number of pages; the size of the print; the number and types of illustrations, maps, charts, graphs, etc.; citations and their style and location; bibliography; structure; the date of original publication. Readers also need to know the type of book you are reviewing (history, travel, biography, anthology, fiction) and how the author has limited his subject. 4. Deal with content, but do not summarize! Readers need to know what the book is about and how the author handles his or her subject. Never attempt to rewrite the book! 5. \"Consider not only content but style. You may be tempted to limit yourself to what the author says, but you should be concerned as well with how he says it, for two books on the same subject may differ greatly in merit because of differences in the manner of their writing.\"* 6. Avoid \"glittering generalities.\" Sweeping statements must be supported by specific examples. Avoid statements such as the following: \"I liked this book because it was interesting;\" \"I recommend this book to anyone who likes science;\" or \"This is the best book I\'ve ever read.\" 7. In most works of non-fiction, the reviewer must consider scholarship. Who is the author? How does he or she document? What qualifies him or her to write this book? Has he or she done his or her homework? How does he or she fit into modern scholarship on this particular subject? 8. Your review should be yours alone, not a reflection of professional criticisms. Your opinions are valid even though your experiences may be limited. Your reader wants to know what you think. 9. Discuss the value of this book to you and to the audience for which it was written. Don\'t impose your values and standards on an author who wrote in another time and in another place. In addition, never condemn an author who writes for a specific audience for not appealing to readers (even yourself) who are not a part of that audience. 10. Apt quotations, purposefully and sparingly used, can add a special flavor to your review. 11. PROOFREAD! source..

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Oates, Stephen B. — Lincoln: The Man Behind the Myths Book Review
The book is very essential for any student of Lincoln and the history of America at large. This book revolves around a unique encounter of America`s 16th President in reality and memory. Oates who is the most popular historical interpreter of Lincoln exposes the human side of the great and catastrophic president. The author also gives an insight overview of the President`s depression, difficulties with love and his troubling attitude about slavery. Oates also explores what Lincoln myths reveals about the American people. This book also offers valuable information about the reality beyond the two sources of Lincoln myth. The sources are primary myth and a secondary myth. The primary myth is of a saintly and folkloric Lincoln of Carl Sandburg while the secondary myth is the myth of the ‘white honky` Lincoln of 1970s.
The author is a professor in history and has done several works about the history of some of American`s top leaders like Martin Luther. He strongly emphasizes that Lincoln drew deeply upon the "spirit of his age", which was a profoundly revolutionary time across the world. Oates relates how Lincoln absorbed one of the core lessons of America from the example of Henry Clay:"in this country one can scarcely be so poor, but that, if he will, he can acquire sufficient education to get through the world respectably". That slavery was the cause of the Civil War is beyond all doubt. As Oates explains, however, the North did not go to war to free the slaves. In the standard phrasing, the North went to war to 'preserve the union'. Oates explores Lincoln's fears that the spread of slavery in the wake of the Kansas-Nebraska Act and the Dred Scott decision would lead to the destruction of democratic society. The debate then still raged on the world stage whether a republican form of government could last. Lincoln rejected the "ingenious sophism" that states could freely leave the Union. "With rebellion thus sugar coated [southern leaders have been drugging the public mind of their section for more than thirty years." Secession posed nothing less than a final challenge to popular government. If a minority could destroy the government any time it felt aggrieved, then no government could ...
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