Remixing the Civil War: Meditations on the Sesquicentennial

This looks like an interesting collection of essays on the sesquicentennial, though a little steep at $40, though there is a paperback edition at $25, still a little steep. It appears to use Robert Penn Warren’s _The Legacy of the Civil War_, written on occasion for the Centennial, as the starting pointing point of reference:

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1421402505/ref=as_li_qf_sp_asin_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=civwarmem-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=9325&creativeASIN=1421402505

“In 1961, the historian and poet Robert Penn Warren remarked that “the Civil War is, for the American imagination, the great single event of our history.” This volume reconsiders whether, fifty years later, Warren’s claim still holds true.

Essays from specialists in art, literature, and history examine how contemporary culture represents and interprets the Civil War. They look at the works of more than thirty artists and writers as well as multiple movements—political and social—to reveal the many and provocative ways in which Americans engage the Civil War today. The book includes chapters on the place of Abraham Lincoln in Barack Obama’s presidential campaign, controversies over the symbolism of the Confederate flag, and the proliferation of ‘Juneteenth’ observances.

Remixing the Civil War pays special attention to the works of African Americans and white southerners, for whom the Civil War was a revolutionary and defining moment. Such prominent scholars as Robert H. Brinkmeyer Jr., W. Fitzhugh Brundage, Kirk Savage, and Elizabeth Young explore the works of major artists and lesser-known figures, including Bobbie Ann Mason, Kara Walker, Dario Robleto, and John Huddleston. The authors find that Americans today openly and playfully manipulate familiar images of the Civil War to explore the malleability and permeability of traditional social categories like national identity, gender, and race.

This collection continues the conversation Warren began fifty years ago, although taking it in unorthodox and challenging directions, to offer fresh and stimulating perspectives on the war’s presence in the collective imagination of the nation.”

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About marcferguson

I teach history, including the American Civil War Era, as an Adjunct at American International College in Springfield, Ma. I also teach survey courses in U.S. history, Western Civilization, and World History, and have taught at other area colleges, including the University of Massachusetts/Amherst, and Holyoke Community College. While my academic background is in European History, my interest in the American Civil War began about a decade ago. Other areas of interest include Modernism, 20th century World Thought and Culture, The Rise of the West after 1400, 19th c. American Society and Culture, Central and Eastern European History and Culture, and Local History. I have in recent years cut back my teaching drastically in order to devote more time raising my kids (15 year old twins now), including working part-time at their elementary/middle school for the past 6 years, they are now launched and off to High School, and I plan to crank up my involvement in teaching history and local history projects, particularly in light of the American Civil War Sesquicentennial.
This entry was posted in Monuments and Memorials, Slavery and Emancipation. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Remixing the Civil War: Meditations on the Sesquicentennial

  1. Chuck says:

    Thanks for making this book known to me.

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