This incisive history should dispel the pernicious notion that the Confederacy fought the Civil War to advance the constitutional principle of states' rights and only coincidentally to preserve slavery.
(The New York Times Book Review
Dew has produced an eye-opening study....So much for states' rights as the engine of secession.
(James McPherson The New York Review of Books
Charles B. Dew offers a penetrating and incisive evaluation of secessionist ideology, with a clear eye to the priority of race over issues of constitutional rights. The principal source on which the book is built certainly appears neglected to me, and the source is worthy of exploitation: we have an opportunity here to see what Southerners said to each other and not what they said primarily to the North or to the world.
(Mark E. Neely, Jr., author of The Fate of Liberty: Abraham Lincoln and Civil Liberties
and Southern Rights: Political Prisoners and the Myth of Confederate Constitutionalism