Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address surely stands with the Apology of Socrates and the Funeral Oration of Pericles among the great speeches offered at crucial civic moments in human history. It is familiar and justly famous to all Americans. But as Diana Schaub discusses in this podcast, it is precisely because we know it so well that it can be hard to appreciate the scope of its achievement. To truly understand how a statement so brief could run so deep and last so long, Schaub says that we must carefully consider its substance and structure, and its place in Lincoln’s thought.

This conversation is inspired by Diana’s essay from our Spring 2014 issue on Lincoln at Gettysburg. Read it here: https://www.nationalaffairs.com/publications/detail/lincoln-at-gettysburg

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  1. Richard Finlay Inactive
    Richard Finlay
    @RichardFinlay

    Quoting from the linked essay:

    “… there is a crystal-clear distinction between a justified revolution, undertaken in response to well-documented violations of rights, and an unjustified rebellion in which one portion of a democratic people, unhappy with the results of a perfectly constitutional election, attempts to nullify that election by ….”

    Apropos today?

    • #1
  2. Taras Coolidge
    Taras
    @Taras

    Richard Finlay (View Comment):

    Quoting from the linked essay:

    “… there is a crystal-clear distinction between a justified revolution, undertaken in response to well-documented violations of rights, and an unjustified rebellion in which one portion of a democratic people, unhappy with the results of a perfectly constitutional election, attempts to nullify that election by ….”

    Apropos today?

    I always thought that the Southern states had a pretty good Constitutional case for a right of secession — but no sooner than March, 1865, because they had participated in the Presidential election of 1860. 

    What the Confederates did was like losing a hand in a card game and then taking back their wager.  Strange way to behave, for a people who made so much of their sense of “honor”.

    • #2
  3. Patrick McClure Coolidge
    Patrick McClure
    @Patrickb63

    No recitation of the address to cap off the ‘cast? Giant missed opportunity.

    • #3
  4. Max Ledoux Admin
    Max Ledoux
    @Max

    Taras (View Comment):

    Richard Finlay (View Comment):

    Quoting from the linked essay:

    “… there is a crystal-clear distinction between a justified revolution, undertaken in response to well-documented violations of rights, and an unjustified rebellion in which one portion of a democratic people, unhappy with the results of a perfectly constitutional election, attempts to nullify that election by ….”

    Apropos today?

    I always thought that the Southern states had a pretty good Constitutional case for a right of secession — but no sooner than March, 1865, because they had participated in the Presidential election of 1860.

    What the Confederates did was like losing a hand in a card game and then taking back their wager. Strange way to behave, for a people who made so much of their sense of “honor”.

    Democrats: Sore losers since 1860.

    • #4
  5. Patrick McClure Coolidge
    Patrick McClure
    @Patrickb63

    Max Ledoux (View Comment):

    Taras (View Comment):

    Richard Finlay (View Comment):

    Quoting from the linked essay:

    “… there is a crystal-clear distinction between a justified revolution, undertaken in response to well-documented violations of rights, and an unjustified rebellion in which one portion of a democratic people, unhappy with the results of a perfectly constitutional election, attempts to nullify that election by ….”

    Apropos today?

    I always thought that the Southern states had a pretty good Constitutional case for a right of secession — but no sooner than March, 1865, because they had participated in the Presidential election of 1860.

    What the Confederates did was like losing a hand in a card game and then taking back their wager. Strange way to behave, for a people who made so much of their sense of “honor”.

    Democrats: Sore losers since 1860.

    PIT worthy Max.

    • #5
  6. colleenb Member
    colleenb
    @colleenb

    Great interview.  Is it only me but I found it hard to hear Professor Schaub in some parts?  And don’t everyone say its only you, ok.

    • #6