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Crowds and Soldiers in Revolutionary North Carolina: The Culture of Violence in Riot and War (Southern Dissent) Hardcover – August 30, 2001


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Product Details

  • Series: Southern Dissent
  • Hardcover: 400 pages
  • Publisher: University Press of Florida; 1st edition (August 30, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0813020956
  • ISBN-13: 978-0813020952
  • Product Dimensions: 9.4 x 6.3 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,829,022 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"Lee's impressive case study of violence in North Carolina is a highly valuable addition to the growing bodies of work on crowd behavior, civil-military relations, the performative nature of public culture during the colonial and revolutionary eras, and the southern phase of the War for Independence." --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

Book Description

"Must reading for those with a serious interest in early American history and the history of American violence."--Richard Maxwell Brown, Beekman Professor Emeritus of Northwest and Pacific History, University of Oregon

Wayne Lee examines how a society shapes, directs, restrains, understands, and reacts to violence, with particular attention to riot and war in 18th-century North Carolina.  He links several riots, the backcountry rebellion known as the Regulation, and the War for Independence by examining each as an act of public violence, rooted in cultural practice and shaped by collective notions of legitimacy.
Beginning with public riot, Lee describes the "rules of violence" shared by rioters, authority, and the public at large and shows how those rules were observed or violated and what the consequences were for rioters and society.  Moving to the larger-scale War of the Regulation, 1768-71, he examines the competing use of violence by settlers and authorities, each playing to a politicized public whose expectations of violence shaped the course of the movement from public protest to organized battlefield.  He then shows how military action, like its civil counterpart, struggled for legitimacy in the Revolutionary War, the Tuscarora and Cherokee Wars, and the "militias' war" of 1780-82.
For students of collective protest, Lee provides new case studies of violence in the colonial South and a more complete explanation for the course of the Regulation.  He shows that such an event cannot be understood without addressing the forces shaping choices about violence.  Similarly, he establishes a new paradigm for examining behavior in war, demanding careful consideration of individual incidents and the overlapping relationship between organized fighting bodies and the civilian population.  He especially insists on a subtler understanding of "military necessity," demonstrating that, in the wide landscape of violence that is war, people’s choices are regulated by a broad set of cultural pressures, of which necessity is only one.
Wayne E. Lee is assistant professor of history at the University of Louisville. He has published in the <i>Historical Journal, Hesperia</i>, and <i>North Carolina Historical Review</i>.


More About the Author

I hope you will pick up and enjoy *Barbarians and Brothers*. It represents the culmination of years of thinking about warfare in the early modern Anglo and Native American world, but I wrote it (or tried to) to be accessible, and I built the argument around the stories and experiences of specific characters from the era. It's not always a happy story. It is, after all, about war. But it is also about how people wrestled with the violence in war and sought to contain it. I think we can learn a lot about how Americans now think about war by re-examining our earliest and most formative experiences with it.

I'm a professor of history at the University of North Carolina (although I hold my basketball loyalties with my alma mater Duke). I specialize in the military history of early modern Europe and America, with a special interest in comparative work. I've done a lot of work on Irish warfare, Native American warfare, and of course the more usual Europeans. I'm turning increasingly to examining military history through a world history lens. That's how I teach it, and it is the textbook project I'm now working on for Oxford University Press.

I've also worked as an archaeologist in various places, including Albania, Greece, and Loudoun County, Virginia. That work has influenced my historical work in various unexpected ways, but continues to be mostly a labor of love (with some journal publications and a forthcoming book on our project in Albania).

I was an officer in the U.S. army from 1987 to 1992, and served in the Gulf War. I blacksmith as a hobby, something which has also had interesting side effects on my historical work.

You can see my academic publishing list at www.unc.edu/~welee

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on April 18, 2003
Format: Hardcover
Wayne Lee has written on the militia and crowds in his innovative work Crowds and Soldiers in Revolutionary North Carolina: The Culture of Violence in Riot and War (2001). This study considers militia issues beyond fighting battles, including the necessity Continental officers faced using militia regiments, and the drawbacks from doing so as well. One of the subjects in Lee�s study of the legitimacy of violence during the war is that of the bitter, bloody feuds between Whigs and Tories, a conflict that caused the Patriot militia to become mired in a struggle of �retaliatory escalation,� vendettas, plundering, murder and other crimes, all of which served to weaken the authority of the newly-created state. For example, Lee describes the fine line between the impressment and stealing of much-needed supplies from the civilian population. �In accordance with military tradition,� Lee notes, �it was acceptable to impress from one�s enemies without payment,� an assumption which too often led to random theft. This and other problems were a constant burden for Greene and other commanders in the south, just part of the many challenges arising from the reliance on militia troops.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on November 29, 2001
Format: Hardcover
I do not usually read a lot of military history, but I picked this book up almost by accident and ended up teaching it in my colonial history seminar. Lee uses revolutionary North Carolina to examine the meaning, purposes and imperatives of violence and the ways citizens and societies rationalize and sometimes challenge the use of violence. This is as much social history as military history, and the literary quality of CROWDS AND SOLDIERS makes it an excellent teaching book. I hope to assign it in my survey class next year, or as soon as it comes out in paper. It passed the "father test" with flying colors--I left my copy where my father would be sure to see it, he picked it up, and read it almost without stopping. This is a fine and important work of history that could hardly be more timely in its implications.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on December 15, 2001
Format: Hardcover
This book was purchased from Amazon.com as a gift for my Mother. She is a historian, genealogist and life long resident of North Carolina. Her main field of expertise is the historical Colonial Period in North Carolina and especially the Regulator Movement. Having taught a college course in early North Carolina history she is well versed on the events and ideologies of the period. She was fascinated with the extensive research done for this publication and how very well the book was written. In her opinion, an excellent book which rates five stars *****.
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