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Publisher's Summary

Most Americans consider Abraham Lincoln to be the greatest president in history. His legend as the Great Emancipator has grown to mythic proportions as hundreds of books, a national holiday, and a monument in Washington, D.C., extol his heroism and martyrdom.

But what if most everything you knew about Lincoln were false? What if, instead of an American hero who sought to free the slaves, Lincoln were in fact a calculating politician who waged the bloodiest war in American history in order to build an empire that rivaled Great Britain's? In The Real Lincoln, author Thomas J. DiLorenzo uncovers a side of Lincoln not told in many history books and overshadowed by the immense Lincoln legend.

Through extensive research and meticulous documentation, DiLorenzo portrays the 16th president as a man who devoted his political career to revolutionizing the American form of government from one that was very limited in scope and highly decentralized - as the Founding Fathers intended - to a highly centralized, activist state. Standing in his way, however, was the South, with its independent states, its resistance to the national government, and its reliance on unfettered free trade.

©2003 Thomas J. DiLorenzo (P)2017 Tantor

Critic Reviews

"A devastating critique of America's most famous president." (Joseph Sobran, commentator and nationally syndicated columnist)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

A Libertarian View?

I found this writing to be a different perspective than I had read before. Full of references that seem to support this as one perspective to be aware of in understanding all viewpoints regarding the Lincoln legacy.

8 of 13 people found this review helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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absolute liberal Democrat horseshit.

the attempt to re-write history by tearing down a American Icon. "Lincoln was a racist," absolute liberal Democrat bullshit

3 of 5 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Thought Provoking!

I enjoyed the different perspective from what I was taught in school about the question, who was Lincoln?

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good ... behind the sences about Trump ... good

... a bit choppy at times ... but interesting for sure ... Trump says whatever is on his mind ... REALLY!

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    4 out of 5 stars
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History is written by the Winner

History is written by the Winner. The real Lincoln was evil. Our school history books left out a lot and twisted the rest. I'm so glad I listened to the book.

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    1 out of 5 stars
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An dishonest and racist piece of junk.

This is an unbelievably dishonest book that selectively uses and disregards facts, events, and thought to create a portrait of Lincoln that has only a passing nod to actual history and why events took place. This is history told by the defeated south. Its not worth your time, money, or thought. It's trash.

2 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Thought provoking and repetitious

I like books that challenge my view of the world. DiLorenzo's book does exactly that and that is why it gets four stars.
The narrator is another big plus because the book becomes quite repetitious after about two hours. The next 6.5 hours are a varied reiteration of the same basic ideas.

Unfortunately, the author chose to add an entirely pointless section at the end where he defends himself against his critics. A decision that in my view rather backfires as it comes over a bit whiny and emphasizes the weaknesses of the book. Despite its shortcomings, it's a worthwhile and thoughprovoking read.

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  • Peter
  • United States
  • 10-07-18

a truely fascinating book.

do your self a favor watch the John Ford movie young Mr Lincoln. A really long interesting take well. researched

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Deconstruction of the myth

This book is worth your time. I will listen to it again. "Wars are complex" but people need simple myths. Lincoln did not suddenly arise. He emerged from the political context of the Whig party between 1820-1850. The author makes an error laying the policies of reconstruction at Lincoln's feet. A book for every shelf!

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Same old liberal agenda

This is crap! Just another liberal book they wont be happy until they turn this into a socialist country.

1 of 3 people found this review helpful