Henry Louis Gates , Jr.

From the Stacks: “The Fire Last Time”
June 1, 1992
August 02, 2013

On the 89th anniversary of James Baldwin's birth, Henry Louis Gates, Jr. on what Baldwin can and can't teach America.

Disputations: The Lost Lincoln
July 25, 2009

Click here to read responses by Michael Kazin, Henry Louis Gates, Jr., and Fred Kaplan. Click here to read Sean Wilentz's response to his critics. In "Who Lincoln Was" (July 15, 2009), Sean Wilentz accuses me and other scholars of ignorance about Civil War era politics, bemoans the “literary turn” in Lincoln scholarship, and worries that historians now give undue attention to Frederick Douglass and other outsiders rather than the politicians who actually changed society.

Disputations: The Lost Lincoln
July 25, 2009

Click here to read responses by  Henry Louis Gates, Jr., John Stauffer, and Fred Kaplan. Click here to read Sean Wilentz's response to his critics. Sean Wilentz is one of America’s most gifted and accomplished historians. But, as a polemicist, he is prone to stumbles.

Disputations: The Lost Lincoln
July 25, 2009

Click here to read responses by Michael Kazin, John Stauffer, and Henry Louis Gates, Jr. Click here to read Sean Wilentz's response to his critics. There is usually room for differences of emphasis and evaluation but, Sean Wilentz’s reductiveness ("Who Lincoln Was," July 15, 2009) reveals a philistine approach so distant from the literary that he actually sneers at “English professors” as interlopers who apparently cannot have anything of interest to contribute to the discussion. Political history is not the only way to approach historical figures.

Disputations: The Lost Lincoln
July 25, 2009

Click here to read letters by Fred Kaplan, Michael Kazin, John Stauffer, and Henry Louis Gates, Jr. The following is Sean Wilentz's response to their letters. I wrote a 25,000 word essay about Abraham Lincoln, not Barack Obama. My aim was to review some of the most prominent scholarly books interpreting Lincoln on the occasion of his bicentennial, and to offer a different view of Lincoln as, first and foremost, a democratic politician.