Battle Cry of Freedom: The Civil War Era

Paperback | November 5, 2003

byJames M. McPherson

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Now featuring a new Afterword by the author, this handy paperback edition of the Pulitzer Prize-winning Battle Cry of Freedom is without question the definitive one-volume history of the Civil War. James McPherson's fast-paced narrative fully integrates the political, social, and military events that crowded the two decades from the outbreak of one war in Mexico to the ending of another at Appomattox. Packed with drama and analytical insight, the book vividly recounts the momentousepisodes that preceded the Civil War including the Dred Scott decision, the Lincoln-Douglas debates, John Brown's raid on Harper's Ferry. From there it moves into a masterful chronicle of the war itself--the battles, the strategic maneuvering by each side, the politics, and the personalities.Particularly notable are McPherson's new views on such matters as the slavery expansion issue in the 1850s, the origins of the Republican Party, the causes of secession, internal dissent and anti-war opposition in the North and the South, and the reasons for the Union's victory. The book's title refers to the sentiments that informed both the Northern and Southern views of the conflict. The South seceded in the name of that freedom of self-determination and self-government for which their fathers had fought in 1776, while the North stood fast in defense of the Unionfounded by those fathers as the bulwark of American liberty. Eventually, the North had to grapple with the underlying cause of the war, slavery, and adopt a policy of emancipation as a second war aim. This "new birth of freedom," as Lincoln called it, constitutes the proudest legacy of America'sbloodiest conflict. This authoritative volume makes sense of that vast and confusing "second American Revolution" we call the Civil War, a war that transformed a nation and expanded our heritage of liberty.

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Now featuring a new Afterword by the author, this handy paperback edition of the Pulitzer Prize-winning Battle Cry of Freedom is without question the definitive one-volume history of the Civil War. James McPherson's fast-paced narrative fully integrates the political, social, and military events that crowded the two decades from t...

James M. McPherson is Edwards Professor of American History at Princeton University. His books include The Struggle for Equality, Marching Toward Freedom, and Ordeal by Fire.

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:952 pages, 5.91 × 9.21 × 1.69 inPublished:November 5, 2003Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:019516895X

ISBN - 13:9780195168952

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Customer Reviews of Battle Cry of Freedom: The Civil War Era

Reviews

Rated 5 out of 5 by from it's a tome but one worth taking time out to read Oh, this is a hefty reading assignment to take on. It's 952 pages so get ready. Having said that it is regarded as the definitive overall history of the U.S. Civil War and one can see why. I felt the background to the war's causes from the actual skirmishes in Kansas prior to the war's start were enlightening especially, as sadly as Canadians we don't seem to study U.S. history at all in high school despite the fact our two nations' histories are so intertwined.
Date published: 2016-11-09

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Editorial Reviews

"Deftly coordinated, gracefully composed, charitably argued and suspensefully paid out, McPherson's book is just the compass of the tumultuous middle years of the 19th century it was intended to be, and as narrative history it is surpassing. Bright with details and fresh quotations, solid withcarefully-arrived-at conclusions, it must surely be, of the 50,000 books written on the Civil War, the finest compression of that national paroxysm ever fitted between two covers."--Los Angeles Times Book Review