An Emancipation of the Mind: Radical Philosophy, the War Over Slavery, and the Refounding of America

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Product Details
$32.50  $30.23
W. W. Norton & Company
Publish Date
6.06 X 9.92 X 1.34 inches | 1.45 pounds

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About the Author
Matthew Stewart is an independent philosopher and historian who has written extensively about the philosophical origins of the American republic, the history of philosophy, management theory, and the culture of inequality. His work has appeared in The Atlantic, the Washington Post, the Wall Street Journal, and Harvard Business Review, among other publications. In recent years he has lived in Boston, New York, and Los Angeles, and is currently based in London.
Stewart consistently presents a lively and compelling march through the history of American slavery--revealing both its barbarity and its own supposedly philosophical and scriptural justifications... [a] bracingly original book.--Harold Holzer "Wall Street Journal"
The author of Nature's God on the intellectual origins of the American republic has carried his story forward to give us an equally riveting history of the philosophical foundations of the abolitionist war against slavery. In this gem of a book, Mathew Stewart innovatively uses nineteenth century German philosophy to illustrate the fundamentally radical and emancipatory nature of American abolitionism.--Manisha Sinha, author of The Rise and Fall of the Second American Republic
Enthralling, illuminating, and timely. A beautifully written, myth-busting, and eye-opening uncovering of the radical, humanistic roots of America's best impulses toward justice and equality. A must-read for anyone who wants to fully understand not only the abolitionist movement and the nation's struggle over slavery, but also America's ongoing conflicts related to religion, nationalism, theology, and democracy. By delving into the lives and Enlightenment thinking of Frederick Douglass, Theodore Parker, Abraham Lincoln, and Ottilie Assing, Matthew Stewart shines a much-needed light on some of the most compelling--and yet underappreciated--emancipatory values that flow through our history and society.--Phil Zuckerman, co-author of Beyond Doubt: The Secularization of Society
A timely and inspiring intervention in the ongoing struggle over our history and collective identity. An Emancipation of the Mind illuminates the enduring and transformative legacy of the radical Enlightenment for the American experiment in republican self-government.--Peter S. Onuf, author (with Annette Gordon-Reed) of Most Blessed of the Patriarchs
Matthew Stewart's philosophical odyssey of the secular roots of America's second founding is cerebral, eloquent, and highly readable. I couldn't stop highlighting the historical connections, stories, and quotations. Stewart leaves readers sated, but somehow wanting to learn more about the fascinating heretical America of this era. A brilliant book exploring America's secular refounding.--Andrew L. Seidel, author of American Crusade
Matthew Stewart renders the radical philosophy of Frederick Douglass, Abraham Lincoln, and John Brown with analytical precision and intellectual rigor. Stewart's notion of "philosophy-in-action" as foundational to radical abolition is a fascinating account of ideas in action, anticipating contemporary arguments over the role of philosophy and ideas in the fight for racial equality.--Kerri Greenidge, author of The Grimkes
Engaging and often surprising.--S.C. Gwynne "New York Times"