Thursday, February 12, 2009

Another Incredible Lincoln Special on PBS!

I highly recommend PBS' Looking for Lincoln, in which African American historian Henry Louis Gates Jr. visits various Lincoln sites and consults other Lincoln historians in an effort to reconcile his views about the 16th President. It's a fascinating journey as Gates investigates the circumstances behind the Emancipation Proclamation, and the inconsistencies in Lincoln's own views. I'd say the takeaway is that Lincoln was a 19th Century man, with all the most common views of the time, but with the great gift of being able to imagine something else and knowing what the moral right was on the issue of slavery. Lincoln scholar and author Doris Kearns Goodwin offers particularly humane insights to the question at hand; she's wonderful.

The program is absolutely intriguing and you can also watch it online at PBS' excellent website for the show. I was pleased to learn that there have been over 14,000 books written about Lincoln, far more than any other President or American historical figure. He deserves them all.

Happy 200th to America's Most Memorable President!

No comments: