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The Union War

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The Union War Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Even one hundred and fifty years later, we are haunted by the Civil War--by its division, its bloodshed, and perhaps, above all, by its origins. Today, many believe that the war was fought over slavery. This answer satisfies our contemporary sense of justice, but as Gary Gallagher shows in this brilliant revisionist history, it is an anachronistic judgment.

In a searing analysis of the Civil War North as revealed in contemporary letters, diaries, and documents, Gallagher demonstrates that what motivated the North to go to war and persist in an increasingly bloody effort was primarily preservation of the Union. Devotion to the Union bonded nineteenth-century Americans in the North and West against a slaveholding aristocracy in the South and a Europe that seemed destined for oligarchy. Northerners believed they were fighting to save the republic, and with it the world's best hope for democracy.

Once we understand the centrality of union, we can in turn appreciate the force that made northern victory possible: the citizen-soldier. Gallagher reveals how the massive volunteer army of the North fought to confirm American exceptionalism by salvaging the Union. Contemporary concerns have distorted the reality of nineteenth-century Americans, who embraced emancipation primarily to punish secessionists and remove slavery as a future threat to union--goals that emerged in the process of war. As Gallagher recovers why and how the Civil War was fought, we gain a more honest understanding of why and how it was won.

Synopsis:

Today, many believe the Civil War was fought over slavery. This view satisfies our contemporary sense of justice, but as Gallagher's searing revisionist history shows, it is an anachronistic judgment. Northern citizen-soldiers fought the war to preserve the Union. Emancipation was secondary to the war's primary goal of safeguarding the republic.

Synopsis:

2012 Daniel M. and Marilyn W. Laney Prize, Austin Civil War Round Table

Synopsis:

2012 Tom Watson Brown Book Award, Society of Civil War Historians

About the Author

Gary W. Gallagher is John L. Nau III Professor of History at the University of Virginia.

University of Virginia

Product Details

ISBN:
9780674066083
Author:
Gallagher, Gary W.
Publisher:
Harvard University Press
Author:
Gallagher, Gary W.
Location:
Cambridge
Subject:
United States / Civil War Period (1850-1877)
Subject:
US History-1800 to Civil War
Subject:
POLITICAL SCIENCE / Political Ideologies/Democracy
Subject:
HISTORY / Social History
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Publication Date:
20120903
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Language:
English
Illustrations:
41 halftones
Pages:
256
Dimensions:
9 x 6 in

Related Subjects

History and Social Science » Military » Civil War » General
History and Social Science » Military » US Military » General
History and Social Science » Politics » General
History and Social Science » Politics » Peace and War
History and Social Science » US History » 1800 to Civil War
History and Social Science » World History » General
Science and Mathematics » Physics » General

The Union War New Trade Paper
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$18.95 In Stock
Product details 256 pages Harvard University Press - English 9780674066083 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , Today, many believe the Civil War was fought over slavery. This view satisfies our contemporary sense of justice, but as Gallagher's searing revisionist history shows, it is an anachronistic judgment. Northern citizen-soldiers fought the war to preserve the Union. Emancipation was secondary to the war's primary goal of safeguarding the republic.
"Synopsis" by , 2012 Daniel M. and Marilyn W. Laney Prize, Austin Civil War Round Table
"Synopsis" by , 2012 Tom Watson Brown Book Award, Society of Civil War Historians
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