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Ill Literacy, Episode XXX: The Age of Acrimony (Guest: Jon Grinspan)

May 10, 2021

In Episode XXX of Ill Literacy, Tim Benson talks with Jon Grinspan, author of “The Age of Acrimony: How Americans Fought to Fix Their Democracy, 1865-1915.”

Heartland’s Tim Benson is joined by Jon Grinspan, curator of political history at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History to discuss his new book, The Age of Acrimony: How Americans Fought to Fix Their Democracy, 1865-1915. They discuss what presidential elections looked like in the mid-19th Century, why turnout was so high in those elections, and why they were much more raucous and violent than elections today. They also discuss how reformers went about changing election practices, what their motivations were, and the consequences of those changes, both good and ill.

Get the book here: https://www.bloomsbury.com/us/the-age-of-acrimony-9781635574623/

Show Notes:

Politico Magazine: Jon Grinspan – “The Forgotten Precedent for Our ‘Unprecedented’ Political Insanity”

https://www.politico.com/news/magazine/2021/04/24/forgotten-precedent-unprecedented-politics-age-of-acrimony-484072

Star Tribune: Kevin Canfield – “Review: 'The Age of Acrimony,' by Jon Grinspan”

https://www.startribune.com/review-the-age-of-acrimony-by-jon-grinspan/600049330/

U.S. National Archives: The Age of Acrimony: How Americans Fought to Fix their Democracy, 1865–1915 (VIDEO)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0asEaTrg_cY

Wall Street Journal: Michael Barone – “‘The Age of Acrimony’ Review: A Raucous Republic”

https://www.wsj.com/articles/the-age-of-acrimony-review-a-raucous-republic-11618581947

Washington Independent Review of Books: Kitty Kelley – "The Age of Acrimony: How Americans Fought to Fix Their Democracy, 1865-1915”

http://www.washingtonindependentreviewofbooks.com/index.php/bookreview/the-age-of-acrimony-how-americans-fought-to-fix-their-democracy-1865-1915

The Washington Post: Jon Grinspan –“Voter turnout is low on purpose — and it has been for more than a century”

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2021/04/29/voter-turnout-is-low-purpose-it-has-been-more-than-century/

Article Tags
Constitutional Reform
Author
Tim Benson joined The Heartland Institute in September 2015 as a policy analyst in the Government Relations Department.
TBenson@heartland.org @BenceAthwart