Private Confederacies: The Emotional Worlds of Southern Men as Citizens and Soldiers, James Broomall, 240 pp., University of North Carolina Press, 5 illustrations, bibliographic notes, bibliography, index. Hardcover $90.00; Paperback, $29.95.
From The Publisher: How did the Civil War, emancipation, and Reconstruction shape the
masculinity of white Confederate veterans? As James J. Broomall shows,
the crisis of the war forced a reconfiguration of the emotional worlds
of the men who took up arms for the South. Raised in an antebellum
culture that demanded restraint and shaped white men to embrace
self-reliant masculinity, Confederate soldiers lived and fought within
military units where they experienced the traumatic strain of combat and
its privations together--all the while being separated from suffering
Military service provoked changes that escalated with the end
of slavery and the Confederacy's military defeat. Returning to civilian
life, Southern veterans questioned themselves as never before, sometimes
suffering from terrible self-doubt. Drawing on personal
letters and diaries, Broomall argues that the crisis of defeat
ultimately necessitated new forms of expression between veterans and
among men and women. On the one hand, war led men to express levels of
emotionality and vulnerability previously assumed the domain of women.
On the other hand, these men also embraced a virulent, martial
masculinity that they wielded during Reconstruction and beyond to
suppress freed peoples and restore white rule through paramilitary
organizations and the Ku Klux Klan.
James J. Broomall is assistant professor of history at Shepherd
University and director of the George Tyler Moore Center for the Study
of the Civil War.
Tuesday, February 19, 2019
Forthcoming: Southern Citizen Soldiers and How They Felt During the War and Reconstruction
Posted by Rea Andrew Redd at 3:24 PM
Labels: Confederate Soldiers, Confederate Veterans
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