The Tangled Web of the Civil War and Reconstruction: Readings and Writings from a Novelist's Perspective

The Tangled Web of the Civil War and Reconstruction: Readings and Writings from a Novelist's Perspective

by David Madden

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This unique collection of writings by the celebrated author David Madden provides a multitude of reflections on the Civil War and Reconstruction, from nonfiction to fiction. Included are Madden’s examination of key works by historians James McPherson and Fletcher Pratt, the story of the effort to simultaneously burn nine bridges by nine unionist guerrilla bands in the most complicated and coordinated guerrilla tactic of the war, and rediscoveries of both classic and contemporary works of Civil War fiction from William Faulkner, Joseph Stanley Pennell, and more. Alongside these essays are pieces from Madden’s Civil War novel, Sharpshooter, which illustrate the interconnectedness of fiction and nonfiction.

This meshing of iconoclastic and controversial pieces includes varied perspectives on every aspect of the war and reconstruction, from culture and civilian life to an imagining of Abraham Lincoln’s critique of how historians have recorded the war and its aftermath. By exploring this web of perception, we can better understand the war and, in turn, shed greater light on the present and the future.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781442243491
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
Publication date: 08/05/2015
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 260
File size: 5 MB

About the Author

David Madden was founding director of the United States Civil War Center from 1992 to 1999 and is now LSU Robert Penn Warren Professor of Creative Writing, Emeritus. He served on the Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Advisory Board and was Louisiana Commissioner for the Bicentennial. He has published many books of nonfiction, including four on the Civil War. He has also published eleven novels, including Sharpshooter: A Novel of the Civil War, and three books of short stories, including his latest, The Last Bizarre Tale. His book of stories, The Shadow Knows, won a National Council on the Arts Award, and The Suicide’s Wife was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize and was made into a CBS movie. Madden has lectured on the Civil War, Abraham Lincoln, fiction, and a wide variety of other subjects, and given dramatic readings of his fiction at more than two hundred colleges and conferences. A native of east Tennessee, he now lives in Black Mountain, North Carolina.

Table of Contents

Part I. “The Vibration Ripples to the Remotest Perimeter”
For the New Millennium, New Perspectives on the Civil War and Reconstruction (as of 1997)
Fletcher Pratt’s Short History of the Civil War: Ordeal by Fire
On James McPherson’s For Cause and Comrades: Why Men Fought in the Civil War
Classics of Civil War Fiction
William Faulkner’s Absalom, Absalom! Quentin! Listen!
Rediscovering a Major Civil War Novel: Joseph Stanley Pennell’s History of Rome Hanks and Kindred Matters
The Innocent Stare at the Civil War: Madison Jones’s Nashville 1864: The Dying of the Light
O. Henry’s Civil War Surprises
The Last American Epic: The Civil War Novels of Father and Son, Michael and Jeff Shaara
The Simultaneous Burning of Nine Bridges in East Tennessee
The Sinking of the Sultana: A Meditation on Loss and Forgetfulness
Part II. Fictional Meditations on the Civil War
Willis Carr, Sharp-shooter, at Bleak House, Knoxville
Willis Carr Meditates on the Act of Sketching: Hair Trigger Pencil Lines
Willis Carr, Sharp-shooter, Meditates on Photographs
A Fever of Dying: Henrietta Ramsey Lenoir and General William Price Sanders
The Incendiary at the Forks of the River
Fragments Found on the Field: Parson Brownlow and Dr. James Gettys Ramsey
Lincoln’s Second Gettysburg Address

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