The Second Founding

ebook How the Civil War and Reconstruction Remade the Constitution

By Eric Foner

cover image of The Second Founding

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"Gripping and essential."—Jesse Wegman, New York Times

An authoritative history by the preeminent scholar of the Civil War era, The Second Founding traces the arc of the three foundational Reconstruction amendments from their origins in antebellum activism and adoption amidst intense postwar politics to their virtual nullification by narrow Supreme Court decisions and Jim Crow state laws. Today these amendments remain strong tools for achieving the American ideal of equality, if only we will take them up.

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The Second Founding