Chapter

Radical Gettysburg

George P. Fletcher

in Our Secret Constitution

Published in print March 2003 | ISBN: 9780195156287
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780199872169 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/0195156285.003.0003
Radical Gettysburg

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This chapter carefully analyzes the text of Abraham Lincoln's Gettysburg Address – beginning with the opening line, which evokes the Declaration of Independence rather than the Constitution – as the “preamble” to the new constitutional legal order. The author focuses on themes of nationhood, national identity, divine mission, equality and popular democracy, in contrast to the Constitution's original emphasis on a republic made up of free individuals.

Keywords: Constitution; Declaration of Independence; divine mission; equality; Gettysburg Address; Abraham Lincoln; national identity; nationhood; popular democracy; republic

Chapter.  8558 words. 

Subjects: US Politics

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