Sean's Reviews > This Republic of Suffering: Death and the American Civil War

This Republic of Suffering by Drew Gilpin Faust
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's review
Jan 22, 2011

really liked it
bookshelves: favorites, non-fiction

"This Republic of Suffering: Death and the American Civil War" is a timely, well researched historical work about how North and South dealt with mass death during the American Civil War. Written by Drew Faust, President of Harvard University, the book engages with profound questions of how the American Civil War. It's a history of the American Civil War that is not focused on battles and commanders but on what could rightly be termed folk history, how individuals and a nation processed the significance of the death of an individual and the meaning of mass death.

Clear and engaging, the book looks at the many different components of death during war. The conception of death in the Civil War was centered around the concept of the "Good Death." The "Good Death" was the perfect picture of domesticity: a calm death surrounded by friends and family, where they can accurately gauge their mental state. The main thrust of the book is to address how individual soldiers and the nation reconciled the desire for the "good death" to the realities of the battlefield.
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Reading Progress

Started Reading
January 3, 2010 – Finished Reading
January 22, 2011 – Shelved
January 22, 2011 – Shelved as: favorites
March 22, 2014 – Shelved as: non-fiction

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