This Republic of Suffering

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Industrial Age

This Republic of Suffering: Death and the American Civil War
Author: Faust, Drew Gilpin
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Time Period: Industrial Age
Time Frame: 1861-1865
Geographic Area: North America
Country: United States
Topics: Death, American Civil War
Genre: Non Fiction
Reading Age: Young Adult, Adult
Format: Book
Published: 2008

American History > Industrial Age > Civil War

More than 600,000 soldiers lost their lives in the American Civil War. An equivalent proportion of today's population would be six million. In This Republic of Suffering, Drew Gilpin Faust reveals the ways that death on such a scale changed not only individual lives but the life of the nation, describing how the survivors managed on a practical level and how a deeply religious culture struggled to reconcile the unprecedented carnage with its belief in a benevolent God. Throughout, the voices of soldiers and their families, of statesmen, generals, preachers, poets, surgeons, nurses, northerners and southerners come together to give us a vivid understanding of the Civil War's most fundamental and widely shared reality.

Emily's Review

This book was just plain fascinating. I enjoy morbid things and this book is definitely morbid. But it's also just downright interesting. The scale of death during the Civil War was something completely unseen in American History and it changed country, not just in population, but in the way people thought of death and burial. Even if you are a bit squeamish, this book is definitely worth picking up. It isn't gory, and it doesn't go into detail about the deaths themselves, but rather how they impacted the people left behind to deal with the aftermath.

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