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xi Acknowledgments T his book began as a dissertation at Johns Hopkins University under the direction of Ronald G. Walters and Dorothy Ross. I could not have asked for better guides into the worlds of abolitionism, American cultural and intellectual history, and academic life. Today it is impossible for me to return to Ron’s scholarship on the antislavery movement without noticing countless ways in which his thinking has informed my own; it would be just as impossible to calculate his influence on these pages—not to mention the many, many drafts that came before them. Dorothy’s interest in and support for my work has also been invaluable. I have returned to her searching comments on my dissertation many times over the past several years to help me find my way forward in the revision process. Her equally generous comments on the final draft of the book manuscript challenged me in all the right ways and proved essential to the finished product. Most importantly, both Ron and Dorothy offered me friendship and the feeling that I was their colleague from the beginning of my time as their student. Their belief in the historian I could be has made me the historian I am, but I still aspire to be more like the historians they are. At Johns Hopkins, it was also my good fortune to learn from Christopher Brown, Michael Johnson, and Paul Kramer, each of whom helped to shape the lines of inquiry that led to this book. For reading parts or all of the dissertation and sharing advice along the way, I’m grateful as well to David Bell, Jane Dailey, Thomas Izbicki, Pier Larson, Phil Morgan, Ken Moss, Bill Rowe, Erica Schoenberger , and Judy Walkowitz. I could not have finished the dissertation without the intellectual camaraderie and feedback of my fellow graduate students, especially Joe Adelman, Matthew Bender, Michael Henderson, Katherine Hijar, Marguerite Hoyt, Kate Jones, Tara Kelly, Jason Kuznicki, Kimberly Lynn, Lars I I xii Acknowledgments Maischak, Bonnie Miller, Ethan Miller, Catherine Molineux, Clare Monagle, Kate Moran, Sarah Mulhall, Kate Murphy, Greg O’Malley, and Kyle Planitzer. I am deeply honored that this book is appearing in a series edited by James Brewer Stewart and Richard Blackett, two of my scholarly heroes. From the day we met in 2004, Jim has been a tireless friend of this project, and those who know Jim will realize that “tireless” is the right word for him. For his comments on earlier versions of this work and for our many conversations on Phillips, Garrison , and abolitionism then and now, I am extraordinarily grateful. Hopefully I will have many opportunities to pay forward the collegiality and generosity that I cannot fully repay to him. Richard is the sort of scholar who always seems to discover and take the “new turn” in the historiography decades before everyone else; that’s why his support for this book, his advice about archives, his comments on an earlier draft, and his friendly questions about when it would be finished have meant so much. Most of all, Jim and Richard have modeled for me how to take history seriously while still having fun doing it. Shortly after I finished at Hopkins, Robert K. Nelson and Amanda Bowie Moniz did me the honor of reading the dissertation and sending me their reflections on it; their comments influenced my revisions more than they may realize. My good friend Kent Dunnington read chapters of the first complete draft as I finished them, providing helpful insights and moral support. Conversations with François Furstenberg at conferences, in Montreal, and in Houston helped me figure out what I was trying to say and encouraged me to say it. Richard Huzzey’s comments on the penultimate draft were hugely helpful, and Edward Rugemer’s report on the final draft and help at earlier stages proved invaluable. Rand Dotson and Lee Sioles helped shepherd the project to publication at LSU, and Stan Ivester made the copyediting process a pleasure. Many other scholars also contributed to my thinking by commenting on conference papers, sending me citations and sources, sharing their work, providing encouragement, or listening patiently as I tried to talk through unformed ideas. In particular, I would like to thank Leslie Butler, Enrico Dal Lago, Douglas Egerton, Roy Finkenbine, David Gellman, Luke Harlow, Martha Hodes, Mischa Honeck, Daniel Walker Howe, Ari Kelman, Gale Kenny, Jane Landers, Brian Luskey, Tim Marr, Matthew Mason, Angela Murphy, Rich Newman, Jim Oakes, Lewis Perry, David Quigley...


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