The documents in this collection show that although in some ways universal, the idea of freedom has never been a fixed, timeless concept with a single, unchanging definition. In fact, the history of the United States is in part a story of debates and struggles over freedom. Crises like the American Revolution, the Civil War, and the Cold War have permanently transformed the meaning of freedom. So too have demands by various groups of Americans for greater freedom The primary-source selections in this book include presidential proclamations and letters by runaway slaves, famous court cases and obscure manifestos, prevailing ideas and dissenting ones. The voices range from Las Casas and Pontiac through Jefferson, Thoreau, Douglass, and Lincoln to Stanton, Sanger, Garvey, Luce, Byrd, and Obama. The Fourth Edition ofVoices of Freedom includes new documents that better reflect the religious aspects of American history. It remains a comprehensive collection that offers a diverse gathering of authors and a wide breadth of opinion. Fully compiled and edited by Eric Foner, the collection includes headnotes and critical questions for each document. The book is organized as a companion to the textbookGive Me Liberty! An American History, Fourth Edition, by Eric Foner, and it can also be used with other texts in the American history survey and other courses.
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Eric Foner is the preeminent historian of his generation, highly respected by historians of every stripe--whether they specialize in political history or social history. His books have won the top awards in the profession, and he has been president of both major history organizations: the American Historical Association and the Organization of American Historians. He has worked on every detail of Give Me Liberty!, which displays all of his trademark strengths as a scholar, teacher, and writer. A specialist on the Civil War/Reconstruction period, he regularly teaches the nineteenth-century survey at Columbia University, where he is DeWitt Clinton Professor of History. In 2011, Foner's The Fiery Trial: Abraham Lincoln and American Slavery won the Pulitzer Prize in History, the Bancroft Prize, and the Lincoln Prize.
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