In The Confederacy as a Revolutionary Experience (1970) and The Confederate Nation (1979), Emory Thomas redefined the field of Civil War history and reconceptualized the Confederacy as a unique entity fighting a war for survival. Today scholars continue to build on Thomass work. Inside the Confederate Nation honors his enormous contributions to the field with fresh interpretations of all aspects of Confederate lifenationalism and identity, family and gender, battlefront and homefront, race, and postwar legacies and memories.
Many of the volumes twenty essays focus on individuals, households, communities, and particular regions of the South, highlighting the sheer variety of circumstances southerners faced over the course of the war. Other chapters explore the public and private dilemmas faced by diplomats, policy makers, journalists, and soldiers within the new nation. All of the essays attempt to explain the place of southerners within the Confederacy, how they came to see themselves and others differently because of the new nation, and the disparities between their expectations and reality.
Contributors include James M. McPherson, William C. Davis, Joseph T. Glatthaar, William S. McFeely, Nina Silber, Jean E. Friedman, John C. Inscoe, Clarence L. Mohr, Thomas G. Dyer, Lesley J. Gordon, Brian S. Wills, Russell Duncan, Jennifer Lund Smith, David H. MgGee, Frank J. Byrne, Keith S. Bohannon, Rod Andrew Jr., Christopher Phillips, Jennifer Lynn Gross, Philip D. Dillard, and Glenna R. Schroeder-Lein. This exciting new collection continues the interpretive debates Thomass work first inspired thirty-five years ago, affirming his lasting influence on Civil War history.