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This Republic of Suffering

Cover of This Republic of Suffering

This Republic of Suffering

Death and the American Civil War
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During the Civil War 620,000 soldiers lost their lives. The equivalent proportion of today’s population would be six million. This Republic of Suffering explores the impact of the enormous death toll from every angle: material, political, intellectual, and spiritual.

Drew Gilpin Faust delineates the ways death changed not only individual lives but the life of the nation. She describes how survivors mourned and how a deeply religious culture reconciled the slaughter with its belief in a benevolent God. Throughout, the voices of soldiers and their families, of statesmen, generals, preachers, poets, surgeons, and nurses, of Northerners and Southerners, slaveholders and freed people, of the most exalted and the most humble are brought together to give us a vivid understanding of the Civil War’s most fundamental and widely shared reality.

During the Civil War 620,000 soldiers lost their lives. The equivalent proportion of today’s population would be six million. This Republic of Suffering explores the impact of the enormous death toll from every angle: material, political, intellectual, and spiritual.

Drew Gilpin Faust delineates the ways death changed not only individual lives but the life of the nation. She describes how survivors mourned and how a deeply religious culture reconciled the slaughter with its belief in a benevolent God. Throughout, the voices of soldiers and their families, of statesmen, generals, preachers, poets, surgeons, and nurses, of Northerners and Southerners, slaveholders and freed people, of the most exalted and the most humble are brought together to give us a vivid understanding of the Civil War’s most fundamental and widely shared reality.

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  • Reading Level:
    9 - 12

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Awards-
About the Author-
  • DREW GILPIN FAUST is president of Harvard University, the first woman to serve in this role. She is the author of five previous books, including Mothers of Invention. She and her husband live in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Reviews-
  • AudioFile Magazine One in five combatants in the Civil War died, and the author examines all the conceivable causes and consequences surrounding those deaths. Surprisingly, more soldiers died of disease than from their wounds. Lorna Raver's deep voice sometimes takes on a masculine gruffness to quote men talking, and sometimes she speaks as a female character she needs to assume. Her reserved manner fits the somber topic, and her unhurried pace allows listeners to assimilate every word. With great versatility she bounces from describing the mourning garments of nineteenth-century widows to reciting the contemporary poetry of Emily Dickinson. Raver's best moments come as she reads the letters of worried relatives seeking knowledge of the status and whereabouts of soldiers they fear may be dead. J.A.H. (c) AudioFile 2008, Portland, Maine
  • Library Journal “Beautifully written, honest, and penetrating, Faust's book about ‘the work of death’ in fact brings death to life. Anyone wanting to understand the ‘real war’ and its transcendent meaning must face the facts Faust arrays before us….Essential.”
Title Information+
  • Publisher
    Blackstone Audio, Inc.
  • OverDrive MP3 Audiobook
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    All copies of this title, including those transferred to portable devices and other media, must be deleted/destroyed at the end of the lending period.

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Death and the American Civil War
Drew Gilpin Faust
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