The South lost the Civil War, but southerners have certainly held their own in the postwar battle to shape historical interpretations of the conflict. Southern politicians, war veterans, and historians successfully promoted the "Lost Cause" view of the origins and results of our national nightmare. The South, so the story goes, wanted to preserve its unique culture, and slavery was not a fundamental basis of that culture. Led by valiant gentlemen-officers (e.g., Robert E. Lee) and brave, defiant common soldiers, the Confederacy struggled against insurmountable odds, eventually succumbing to numerically but not morally superior forces. This collection of essays by nine Civil War scholars shows how the myth was consciously propagated by southerners, often in an attempt to rationalize the physical and social carnage left by the war. These essays are well reasoned and timely, given current controversies raging over the display of the Confederate battle flag. This will be a valuable addition to Civil War collections. Jay FreemanCopyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
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"The Lost Cause... is a tangible and influential phenomenon in American culture and this book provides an excellent source for anyone seeking to explore its various dimensions." —Southern Historian
"Well reasoned and timely." —Booklist