Abraham Lincoln the Liberator: A Biographical Sketch

1kg Limited, 2015 M06 15 - 404 páginas
Excerpt from Abraham Lincoln the Liberator: A Biographical Sketch

Biographical writings in general may be divided into two distinct classes. The first, which may be called the objective class, is made up of those works which regard the individual as only a factor in the world's progress. They narrate more or less faithfully the important events in his life, and trace their connection with, and influence upon, the life and thought of the age. Thus the life of the individual becomes a chapter in universal history. Such works may have great historic value but if they go no further they lack the essential element of true biography.

The works of the second, or subjective class, deal no less carefully with facts and environments not as finalities, but as manifestations of character. Through the deed they seek to know the doer and to trace his moral and intellectual growth. The writer studies the life of the individual as closely as the botanist studies the development of a strange plant, and for the same purpose. The scientist cares little for the leaves and flowers, simply as leaves and flowers, but rather as exponents of the life and habits of the plant. So the true biographer would read a man's character in his deeds, calling attention to its weaknesses that other men may be warned, and exalting its virtues that they may excite the emulation of mankind.

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