This Republic of Suffering: Death and the American Civil War

Front Cover
Vintage Books, 2009 - History - 346 pages
40 Reviews

More than 600,000 soldiers lost their lives in the American Civil War. An equivalent proportion of today's population would be six million. In This Republic of Suffering, Drew Gilpin Faust reveals the ways that death on such a scale changed not only individual lives but the life of the nation, describing how the survivors managed on a practical level and how a deeply religious culture struggled to reconcile the unprecedented carnage with its belief in a benevolent God. Throughout, the voices of soldiers and their families, of statesmen, generals, preachers, poets, surgeons, nurses, northerners and southerners come together to give us a vivid understanding of the Civil War's most fundamental and widely shared reality.

 

What people are saying - Write a review

User ratings

5 stars
9
4 stars
26
3 stars
4
2 stars
1
1 star
0

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - revliz - LibraryThing

Ah hah. This book answered a lot of questions I've had about the combination of death, military service, mourning customs, and patriotism. i would even say, you cannot begin to understand Memorial Day ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Sullywriter - LibraryThing

A fascinating and obviously grim chronicle of how both the Union and Confederacy coped with the unprecedented vast carnage on the battlefields. A vividly detailed, richly layered, exceptionally well-written work of history. Read full review

All 20 reviews »

Contents

To Lay Down My Life
3
xvn Confederate Dead at Antietam September 1862
5
The Execution of the Deserter Williamjohnson
12
The Harder Courage
32
New Lessons Caring for the Dead
61
I864
72
The Significant ord UNKNOWN
102
114 Nurses and Oflicers ofthe United States Sanitary Commission
114
View of the Darlington CourtHouse and the Sycamore Tree Where
141
Women in Mourning Cemetery in New Orleans
150
I53 Godeys Fashions forjune 1862
158
Henry lngersoll Bowditch at the time of the Civil Var
168
The Dying Soldier
195
Battlefield ofGaines Mill Virginia
203
hat Means this Carnage?
211
Natar
273

no Telegram from William Drayton Rutherford to Sallie Fair Rutherford
120
Ward K at Armory Square Hospital in Washington D C
131
Civilians and the ork oflIourning
137
Clara Barton circa 1865
279
A Burial Party on the Battlefield of Cold Harbor Virginia April 1865
344
Copyright

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

About the author (2009)

Drew Gilpin Faust is president of Harvard University, where she also holds the Lincoln Professorship in History. Dean of the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study from 2001 to 2007, she came to Harvard after twenty-five years on the faculty of the University of Pennsylvania. She is the author of five previous books, including Mothers of Invention: Women of the Slaveholding South in the American Civil War, which won the Francis Parkman Prize and the Avery Craven Prize. She and her husband live in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Bibliographic information