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Re: Books

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  • civilwarlady@yahoo.com
    ... an ... Powell ... are ... emphasized ... have ... or ... structure. ... view ... That is an intersting and I believe correct observation. I think it s only
    Message 1 of 69 , Jan 1, 2005
      --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "aot1952" <aot1952@y...> wrote:
      > I find it interesting that on Civil War Internet boards 'Foote as
      > historian' issue seems to continue to be one of the top three or
      > four recurring discussion topics. There is little that I can say
      > that I have not previously posted upon this subject. For a work of
      > its scope I think it has pretty much passed the test of time as far
      > as not containing too many gross factual errors, although Mr.
      > has pointed out one such error that is frequently cited (the error
      > regarding Buford's alleged repeating carbines) and there clearly
      > others.
      > I personally think that one big problem many people have with Foote
      > is the often unstated one that his work in large measure represents
      > the mid-20th century 'popular' white American version of the Civil
      > War. The version that intentionally or unintentionally de-
      > slavery and conceded that both sides fighting forces deserved to be
      > honored because they had fought for what they believed in! (Kind of
      > skipping over exactly what they believed in).
      > I once heard Foote say that the REAL unstated peace treaty terms
      > ending the Civil War where that in exchange for the Confederate
      > South accepting defeat, embracing the Union, and admitting it was
      > wrong to try and leave the Union, the Confederate South would be
      > allowed by the North to 'handle the reconstruction' of the former
      > Southern society and to honor the former Confederates (rebels or
      > traitors?) as people of honor and true American Heroes.
      > It is just my opinion, but I believe that some critics of Foote
      > real problems with his works' clear role in advancing the second
      > element of attempting to make many of the former confederates into
      > true American Heroes. The most striking example of this perhaps is
      > Foote's treatment of Nathan Bedford Forest but it is just the most
      > obvious of many examples. Of course Foote makes very little effort
      > to discuss slavery and the role of racism during his Narrative,
      > except perhaps to point to some of the racism that led to certain
      > Northern opposition to the Emancipation Proclamation. But for the
      > most part the role of blacks in the whole period is certainly not
      > emphasized and some could justifiably argue is ignored, misstated
      > de-emphasized.
      > Recognizing the works' shortcomings I personally still find it
      > compelling reading. It remains pretty much all I know about the war
      > in New Mexico and the Far West for example. I find it an invaluable
      > introduction to some areas like the diplomatic history of the war
      > and the complexities of the political currents, which over shadowed
      > Lincoln's dealings with Congress and his military command
      > Foote's descriptions of and character studies of `some' of the main
      > actors are some of his best writing in my opinion.
      > But however you cut it, Foote's work is an introduction with a
      > subtle attitude based not only upon some of the facts but also upon
      > a deeply held view of America which was the prevalent `popular'
      > held in the 1940-1980 not only by Southern but by most white
      > Americans. In some ways , for me, it is almost as telling a
      > commentary about the mid-20th century American mind set as a
      > Narrative of the Civil War.
      > By the way in my 'Civil War in Tennessee' class Foote's work would
      > have only gotten a C - I could not have failed him because of his
      > obvious effort but no foot notes or end notes just is is not
      > historical writing at the college level.
      > I certainly could be all wrong-
      > Wakefield

      That is an intersting and I believe correct observation. I think it's
      only been in the past 20 years (if that) that scholarship has focused
      on anything other than the "white male" version of history. Which in
      the long run is good for all of us...except when the focus of the
      scholarship is NOT historical accuracy, but "PCism". There are
      many "sides" to a story and for years we have accepted the popular
      history (written by mostly white males). I think the controversy
      begins when the attempt is made to replace the "standard version"
      with something that ignores it completely and takes off in a
      different direction. We'd all be so much better students if these
      different viewpoints were incorporated into our historical knowledge
      base rather than be presented in a way that seems determined to prove
      the mainstream not only wrong, but with purposely distorting history.

      As for your college assignment...as I have stated before, Foote would
      not be an appropriate source for college level research. It is too
      lengthy even for a general text in a generic American history class.
      It is and I believe was designed as a popular history and if it peaks
      someones interest in investigating more closely, then I believe it
      has served its purpose. Wonder how much attention was given to
      Foote's work in the 25 years or so BEFORE the Burns film?

    • Bob Taubman
      I really liked Sherman s Horsemen, by Evans along with those you have mentioned.  Castel s Decision in the West is an excellent read as is Embrace an Angry
      Message 69 of 69 , Dec 17, 2010
        I really liked Sherman's Horsemen, by Evans along with those you have mentioned.  Castel's Decision in the West is an excellent read as is Embrace an Angry Wind, The Confederacy's Last Hurrah:  Spring Hill, Franklin, and Nashville by Wiley Sword. 

        From: "pete@..." <pete@...>
        To: civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com
        Sent: Sun, December 12, 2010 10:45:14 AM
        Subject: RE: [civilwarwest] Books

        Wiley Sword and Larry Daniels' books on Shiloh
        Peter Cozzens books on Stones River (Murfreesboro) and Iuka & Corinth
        Miers THE WEB OF VICTORY (Vicksburg)
        Sherman and Grant's MEMOIRS

        Along with Chris' question, what thoughts does the group have on WAR LIKE THE THUNDERBOLT?

        ------- Original Message -------
        From    : chris bryant[mailto:paladinsf@...]
        Sent    : 12/11/2010 5:49:02 PM
        To      : civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com
        Cc      :
        Subject : RE: [civilwarwest] Books


              Been pretty slow since I subscribed;maybe everybody's on vacation?Thought I'd ask:what books do you particularly recommend on the war in the
        west?I like Thomas Lawrence Connelly;he had a lot to do with my interest in the west and I'm convinced that he was right about the relative
        importance of the theater and the small minded outlook of R.E.LEE.I've read some other books and articles but thought I'd like to hear if this list
        recommends anyone.
                                      Chris Bryant
                                      Oklahoma City





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