America Aflame

How the Civil War Created a Nation

by David Goldfield

America Aflame

Paperback, 632 pages, Bloomsbury Press, List Price: $20 | purchase

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America Aflame
How the Civil War Created a Nation
David Goldfield

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Book Summary

A narrative history of the Civil War era argues that the conflict occurred as a result of a breakdown induced by the infusion of evangelical religion into the public sphere, causing citizens to regard political differences as matters of good and evil to be fought at any cost.

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I'm not exactly sure why I was so taken with David Goldfield's America Aflame: How the Civil War Created a Nation (Bloomsbury, 2012), but I think it's because it offers a view of the last decades of the antebellum period through Reconstruction years in ways that I had never before considered. Goldfield, a professor of history at the University of North Carolina, Charlotte, analyzes the role that evangelical Christianity played in the years leading up to the Civil War. In the first

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