978-0-85613-211-7 / 9780856132117

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About the book:

The American Civil War was, and remains, one of the most significant events in the history of the modern world. It was the great point of crisis in the development of the United States, and its repercussions are still felt today. Yet to most people it is a confused collection of political, social and military events, with little pattern behind the differing elements. Leading scholars of American history here explain the whole background and course of the war, with special emphasis on the clash between two fraternal societies each with sincere but acutely opposed ambitions. From this basis, they demonstrate where all the various elements come into the story - how for instance, the ante-bellum South developed in such a distinctive manner, and why it identified itself with the continuation and expansion of slavery. The book is illustrated with over 300 pictures, many in colour. This is a compulsive re-appraisal of an historic event of tragic proportions which wove a hybrid collection of peoples into the greatest, most influential nation of the western world.

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