A Source Book of Karl Marx’s Letters About Abraham Lincoln and His Strategic Goal in the Civil War: The Destratification of American Society

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Karl Marx did not view Lincoln as fighting to quell a rebellion, but to start a revolution to end worker exploitation by abolishing a stratification system that was not in the workers’ interest. Even Lincoln’s conscription policy during the Civil War was said to support the workers.
The author cites, in full or part, Marx’s various writings (articles and letters, including one Marx wrote to Lincoln and a reply by Ambassador Charles Adams on Lincoln’s behalf) in which Marx analyzes Lincoln’s actions (e.g., his dismissal of McClellan, The Emancipation Proclamation, conscription), as well as Union (northern) elections and discusses military campaigns.


“Dr. Gesualdi’s work is a welcome addition to the thousands of books on Karl Marx and on Abraham Lincoln. It is important not only because it diagrams a significant crossroads of these two world-historical figures, but because it provides essential insights into Marx’s thinking about America and American politics... Letter writing was as intimate as the person you were writing to as well as your thoughts for the ages…letters are containers of art, thought and memory. “
-Lez Edmond, Ph.D.,
Associate Professor Psychology and Ethnic Studies
St. John’s University

“This book provides historians the opportunity to analyze the history of Abraham Lincoln from the perspective of Karl Marx. A person who people would probably never connect with Abraham Lincoln. Sociology is embedded in the ideas of its classic thinkers. A conversation with Karl Marx’s writings on Abraham Lincoln may be useful for future researchers.”
-Dr. Almerinda Forte,
Professor of Management,
St. John’s University

“Marx’s writing pertaining to Lincoln provide insight into how Marx was thinking, demonstrate how interested and knowledgeable Marx was with respect to American affairs and conveys how important our history was to Europeans…By linking Marx and Lincoln as contemporaries, this writing effectuates for the reader an expanded view of world history.”
-Dr. May Webber,
Associate Professor of Philosophy,
St. John’s University

“…it is a most important contribution in its own right, focusing upon a very specific body of communications that shed light upon a revolutionary moment in history, vastly unknown by anybody…there is nothing like it.”
-Dr. Paul Jalbert,
Associate Professor of Sociology,
University of Connecticut, Stamford Campus

“Dr. Gesualdi artfully and convincingly makes this seamless and penetrating argument throughout his work: leadership properly derives from the sovereignty of a free people…it is quite clear to me that a specific sector of scholars awaits this incisive analysis of this intriguing subject.”
-Dr. Thomas J. Ward,
Founding Director and Associate Professor,
Graduate Program in Criminal Justice Leadership,
St. John’s University

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: American Affairs
Chapter 2: A Criticism of American Affairs
Chapter 3: Comments on North American Events
Chapter 4: Letter Marx to Engels October 29, 1862
Chapter 5: The Situation in North America
Chapter 6: The Election Results in the Northern States
Chapter 7: The Dismissal of McClellan
Chapter 8: Letter: Marx to Engels in Manchester, September 7, 1864
Chapter 9: Letter: Marx to Lion Philips in Zalt-Bommel, November 29, 1864
Chapter 10: To Abraham Lincoln, President of the United States of America
Chapter 11: Ambassador Adams on Behalf of Lincoln Replies
Chapter 12: Address from the Working Men’s International Association to President Johnson
Chapter 13: The International Workingmen’s Association Address to the National Labor Union of the United States
Chapter 14: Summation and Conclusion

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