Historian and professor David Blight discusses the events leading up to the emancipation of slaves in America. He examines the political maneuvering that occurred during the Civil War, and the complex motivations behind Abraham Lincoln’s decision to issue the Emancipation Proclamation. He also recounts the reactions to the Proclamation, from northern abolitionists, to southern slaveholders, to the slaves themselves. The German Historical Institute in Washington, DC hosted this event as part of a lecture series on how societies around the world abolished slavery.
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