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The Marble Man

Louisiana Pbk. Sprache: Englisch.
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Produktdetails
Titel: The Marble Man
Autor/en: Thomas Lawrence Connelly

ISBN: 0807104744
EAN: 9780807104743
Louisiana Pbk.
Sprache: Englisch.
LOUISIANA STATE UNIV PR

Juli 1978 - kartoniert - 272 Seiten

A unique study of mythmakers and theft vulnerable subject, the Confederate general whose army engineer corps background, bitter self-doubt, and family debts ill qualified him for his post-bellum stature as symbol of the patrician, agricultural view of the Old South. Lee's image as a combination of cavalier and St. George was constructed, Connelly finds, only partly by opponents of the Union, such as his early biographer J. William Jones - a "sycophant" who rebuilt the Southern Historical Society - and by those who wanted either to claim that Lee had really won the war or to ennoble the defeat. Northern scholars, editors, and publicists developed theft own sanctifications, sometimes on the premise that it was Lee who tried to save the Union. The peak of such efforts - which also involved praise of white, Anglo-Saxon tradition - coincided with an 1895-1910 burst of anti-industrialism in the North and with the conservative mood of the 1920s, as expressed in journals like Harper's and the Atlantic Monthly. In the academic sphere, Douglas Southall Freeman's 1934 biography offered four volumes of brilliant but Virginiaphilic portraiture, muted, though not fundamentally challenged, by post-WW II historians' singular tendency to make Lee an embodiment of the middle-class virtues the North had secured. Connelly, a University of South Carolina military historian, maps out the controversies about Lee's generalship concisely and energetically; but his prime concern is psychological - he sees Lee as tragic not because he lost but because his strong maternal attachment, as well as the shrewish wife he married partly because she was the step-granddaughter of his own hero, George Washington, held him to narrower loyalties than Washington's, while his adherence to a Puritan rather than an Enlightenment notion of religion gave him a poignant fatalism at odds with his military boldness. Connelly conveys these themes with a professionalism that will enable readers to discriminate among his views of Lee, earlier commentators', and his view of the latter; what could have been a merely useful compilation of propaganda is transformed by Connelly's own evaluations into a highly substantive and challenging work. (Kirkus Reviews)

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