Paired Texts > The Gettysburg Address
We've identified these texts as great options for text pairings based on similar themes, literary devices, topic, or writing style. Supplement your lesson with one or more of these options and challenge students to compare and contrast the texts. To assign a paired text, click on the text to go to its page and click the "Assign Text" button there.
President Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation during the height of the Civil War. It was directed at the eleven states still in rebellion and decreed that all slaves in these rebelling states were freed.Pair “The Gettysburg Address” with “The Emancipation Proclamation,” also issued by Abraham Lincoln, and ask students to think about how the latter document builds upon and advances the principles emphasized in The Gettysburg Address. How do the texts compare to one another in terms of language and form?
This rousing speech by President Lyndon B. Johnson was delivered right after civil rights protesters were brutally beaten on "Bloody Sunday." This speech is considered one of the best presidential speeches in history, and eventually led to The Voting Rights Act of 1965.Pair “The Gettysburg Address” with President Johnson’s “We Shall Overcome” speech and have students compare the historical context and meaning of each piece. While Lincoln ended slavery, discrimination against African Americans continues to this day, and was a hotly contested issue during Johnson’s presidency. How do the two presidents draw upon traditional American ideals to explain, contextualize, and make personal the issues they discuss in their respective speeches?
This text details how the Union dealt the Confederacy a decisive blow in the Civil War at the Battle of Gettysburg in 1863.Pair “The Battle of Gettysburg” with “The Gettysburg Address” and ask students to discuss how effectively the speech by Lincoln captures the carnage of the battle and honors Union losses.
In "President Lincoln's Second Inaugural Address," President Lincoln discusses the causes of the American Civil War and what will be required to repair the nation.Pair “The Gettysburg Address” with “President Lincoln’s Second Inaugural Address” and ask students to discuss President Lincoln’s outlook on the war represented in each text. In “The Gettysburg Address,” President Lincoln talks about ending the war to avenge those who have been lost – how do his motivations to end the war expressed in this text compare to the motivations discussed in “President Lincoln’s Second Inaugural Address?”
In "Causes of the American Civil War," the informational text explores the causes of the American Civil War and the growing hostility between the Northern abolitionists and Southern slaveholders.Pair “The Gettysburg Address” with “Causes of the American Civil War” and ask students to discuss the speech that restored “the dignity and generosity” of Northern and Southern relations. What is the tone of the speech? What does the speech seek to do? How does the historical background of the latter text contribute to their understanding of Lincoln’s speech?
In "Vigil Strange I Kept on the Field One Night," Whitman tells the story of a soldier returning from battle to hold a vigil for his fallen son and fellow soldier.Pair “The Gettysburg Address” with “Vigil Strange I Kept on the Field One NIght” and ask students to discuss the battles and losses of the Civil War shown in each text. What does each text say about honoring soldiers in times of war? What is the tone of “The Gettysburg Address”? How is it similar to and different from the tone in “Vigil Strange I Kept on the Field One Night”?