Battle Cry of Freedom : The Civil War Era
by James M. McPherson
Editor: Oxford University Press
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Now, with a new Postface by the author, this practical paperback book edition of the Pulitzer Cri de Bataille de la Liberté Prize is undoubtedly the definitive volume in the history of the Civil War.James McPherson’s hectic narrative fully integrates the political, social, military and events that encumbered the two decades since the outbreak of war in Mexico at the end of another in Appomattox.Packed with drama and analysis, the book vividly tells the great episodes that preceded the Civil War, including the decision Dred Scott, the Lincoln-Douglas debates, John Brown raid on Harper’s FerryFrom there he moves into a masterly chronicle of the war itself, the battles, the strategic framework of maneuvering by each party, politics, and personality.Particularly remarkable are McPherson’s new perspectives on such issues as slavery problem of expansion in the 1850s, the origins of the Republican Party, the causes of secession, dissent and anti-war opposition in the North and South, and the reasons for the Union’s victory.The title of the book refers to the enlightened opinion of both North and South views of the conflict.The South secedes in the name of the freedom of self-determination and self-government for which their fathers fought in 1776, while the North was swift in defending the Union founded by these fathers as the rampart of the American liberty.Finally, the North had to tackle the underlying cause of war, slavery, and adopt an emancipation policy as a second goal of war.This “new birth of freedom”, as Lincoln called it, is the greatest pride in America’s bloodiest legacy of conflict.This authoritative volume volume of the meaning of this vast and confused “Second American Revolution” we call the Civil War, a war that transformed a nation and extended our heritage of freedom.
James M. McPherson – Battle Cry of Freedom : The Civil War Era – Free
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