Lincoln's Political Faith: Does It Still Have a Place in Presidential Leadership?
The question is often asked whether Lincoln, being the gangly fellow he was, could be elected president in an age of television. It’s a fine, speculative question, but a more germane one is whether a theological worldview and rhetorical style such as his would bring more comfort or nervousness to American voters?
In this presentation, Joseph Fornieri articulates Lincoln’s political faith and shows how it was formulated as a response to the competing political religions of his time that likewise appealed to the authority of the Bible and religion to justify their proslavery policies. He then considers the contemporary relevance of Lincoln’s political faith and its compatibility, or lack thereof, with alternative religious interpretations of American public life issuing from the pulpit today.
Joe Fornieri is an associate professor of political science at Rochester Institute of Technology and already the author of five books on Lincoln, including Abraham Lincoln’s Political Faith and Lincoln’s American Dream.
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