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Polemical Pain: Slavery, Cruelty, and the Rise of Humanitarianism (New Studies in American Intellectual and Cultural History) Hardcover – March 22, 2011

ISBN-13: 978-0801898525 ISBN-10: 0801898528 Edition: 1st
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Polemical Pain: Slavery, Cruelty, and the Rise of Humanitarianism (New Studies in American Intellectual and Cultural History) + The Undeserving Poor: America's Enduring Confrontation with Poverty: Fully Updated and Revised
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Editorial Reviews

Review

A fascinating book on history and consequences of slavery. The research [is] impeccable and it [is] organized in a very readable and easy to grasp fashion.

(Lenore R. Book Bargains and Previews)

Writing with clarity and grace, Abruzzo makes a persuasive case... Her book will fascinate not only scholars exploring slavery and sectionalism but also historians examining the emergence of new definitions of cruelty and benevolence at the advent of the modern world.

(Jeffrey Robert Young Civil War Book Review)

Abruzzo's lucidly written and stunningly original analysis, encompassing debates over the slave trade, colonization, emancipation, and the impact of Stowe's Uncle Tom's Cabin, challenges present-day assumptions concerning the evident nature of ethical judgments.

(Choice)

Polemical Pain is highly recommended as a first-rate work of intellectual history. Abruzzo has written a richly detailed history not easily captured by the limited space of this review. The result is an important book that is well researched and impressively argued, and that greatly advances our knowledge about the national quarrel about slavery through the language of humanitarianism. It is widely applicable and will surely find a diverse audience.

(Mark J. Fleszar H-Law, H-Net Reviews)

A significant reappraisal of Civil War causation and an important contribution to the broader history of the emergence of the modern United States.

(James Hill Welborn III Civil War Monitor)

Abruzzo offers a detailed and comprehensive examination of the relationship between American debates over the morality of slavery and evolving national and international notions of the meaning and limits of humane behavior... It is a very illuminating book.

(Joanne Pope Melish New England Quarterly)

A well-rounded discussion.

(Colleen A. Vasconcellos Journal of World History)

Polemical Pain: Slavery, Cruelty, and the Rise of Humanitarianism will interest scholars of pro- and antislavery thought as well as humanitarianism.

(Carol Faulkner Journal of Southern History)

Highly readable and certainly teachable.

(Justin Rogers-Cooper Nineteenth-Century Contexts)

[A] thought-provoking study... Polemical Pain makes an important contribution.

(Amanda B. Moniz Journal of the Early Republic)

An important work of scholarship, especially for those interested in the history of slavery or humanitarian reform.

(Myra C. Glenn American Historical Review)

Compelling.

(Kirsten Schultz Common Knowledge)

About the Author

Margaret Abruzzo is an assistant professor of history at the University of Alabama.

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Best Books of the Month
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Product Details

  • Series: New Studies in American Intellectual and Cultural History
  • Hardcover: 344 pages
  • Publisher: Johns Hopkins University Press; 1 edition (March 22, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0801898528
  • ISBN-13: 978-0801898525
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.1 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,094,534 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 6 people found the following review helpful By H.C. Carey on May 17, 2012
Format: Hardcover
I would very much like to buy this book and read it. It seems like a worthy subject.

Can someone explain to me why the Kindle ed. is over $43? Has the price of pixels been going up?

Now I won't buy it simply on principle. I suppose--maybe--I can understand a $45 hardback, and no paperback, but $45?

Shame on you, JHU press
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