Who said: "Great political questions stir the deepest nature of one-half the nation, but they pass far above and over the heads of the other half."

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"Great political questions stir the deepest nature of one-half the nation, but they pass far above and over the heads of the other half."

Wendell PhillipsWendell Phillips' eloquent oratory helped drive the abolitionist movement in the leadup to the American Civil War.

He was born in Boston, Massachusetts in 1811. After attending Harvard Law School he opened a law office in Boston but set it aside in order to focus on the antislavery movement. He was a close associate of the abolitionist leader William Lloyd Garrison, and wrote and lectured widely on the topic of abolition. He was considered one of the great orators of his day.

After the Civil War, he focused his efforts on temperance, women's rights and universal suffrage. He was involved in the lyceum movement in the U.S. (a group of organizations that sponsored public programs such as lectures, debates and dramatic performances) and continued to lecture on the lyceum circuit until the early 1880s. He died in 1884.

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