The Tangled Web of the Civil War and Reconstruction: Readings and Writings from a Novelist's Perspective

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9781442243484: The Tangled Web of the Civil War and Reconstruction: Readings and Writings from a Novelist's Perspective
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This unique collection of writings by the celebrated author David Madden provides a multitude of reflections on the Civil War and Reconstruction, from nonfiction to fiction. Included are Madden’s examination of key works by historians James McPherson and Fletcher Pratt, the story of the effort to simultaneously burn nine bridges by nine unionist guerrilla bands in the most complicated and coordinated guerrilla tactic of the war, and rediscoveries of both classic and contemporary works of Civil War fiction from William Faulkner, Joseph Stanley Pennell, and more. Alongside these essays are pieces from Madden’s Civil War novel, Sharpshooter, which illustrate the interconnectedness of fiction and nonfiction.

This meshing of iconoclastic and controversial pieces includes varied perspectives on every aspect of the war and reconstruction, from culture and civilian life to an imagining of Abraham Lincoln’s critique of how historians have recorded the war and its aftermath. By exploring this web of perception, we can better understand the war and, in turn, shed greater light on the present and the future.

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About the Author:

David Madden was founding director of the United States Civil War Center from 1992 to 1999 and is now LSU Robert Penn Warren Professor of Creative Writing, Emeritus. He served on the Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Advisory Board and was Louisiana Commissioner for the Bicentennial. He has published many books of nonfiction, including four on the Civil War. He has also published eleven novels, including Sharpshooter: A Novel of the Civil War, and three books of short stories, including his latest, The Last Bizarre Tale. His book of stories, The Shadow Knows, won a National Council on the Arts Award, and The Suicide’s Wife was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize and was made into a CBS movie. Madden has lectured on the Civil War, Abraham Lincoln, fiction, and a wide variety of other subjects, and given dramatic readings of his fiction at more than two hundred colleges and conferences. A native of east Tennessee, he now lives in Black Mountain, North Carolina.

Review:

It's no surprise to me that Madden, a long-time untangler, dares to take on the tangled web of the Civil War and Reconstruction, and he does it with incisive wit and conviction, vulnerable emotion, and far-reaching imagination. (Winston Groom, bestselling author whose work includes Forrest Gump, The Aviators, and Kearney's March)

David Madden’s The Tangled Web of the Civil War and Reconstruction is the record of a first-rate mind and a clear effective writer engaging critically and imaginatively with the central events of the American experience. I haven’t learned more about the Civil War since 1967 when I was following Shelby Foote around Memphis State University with a tape recorder. (James A. Perkins, Distinguished Professor Emeritus of English and Public Relations, Westminster College)

Throughout his distinguished career, David Madden has been ‘myriad minded,’ as his numerous publications in so many genres show. This book examines the Civil War as depicted in fact and in fiction and from myriad perspectives. Madden’s intersecting lines of trajectory give newcomers to the study and experienced historians alike new strands to touch and new reverberations to feel. Imaginative and multifaceted, The Tangled Web of the Civil War and Reconstruction is an audacious and genuinely original achievement. (Allen Wier, University of Tennessee, Knoxville; author of Tehano)

Having watched David Madden’s progress as creator and director of the United States Civil War Center for more than a decade, I am delighted to see in these historical and fictional pieces evidence of his ever-growing grasp of the history of the American Civil War and Reconstruction. His creativity as well as his willingness to take controversial positions come through loud and clear in this work. (James H. Wharton, LSU chancellor emeritus and former chair of the board of the United States Civil War Center)

Like no other expert on the American Civil War, David Madden exudes a powerful combination: he is an artful writer who is also graced with all the talents of a first-rate historian. His essays and stories are always incisive, challenging, and exceedingly wise. This welcome collection will delight legions of readers and is bound to make a permanent impact. (T. Michael Parrish, past president, Society of Civil War Historians, Baylor University)

David Madden has long been one of our most acute and thoughtful commentators on the culture and history of the American South through his fiction, his essays, and his book reviews. Whether discussing such writers as William Faulkner or Robert Penn Warren or analyzing classics of Civil War fiction or meditations on the great conflict, Madden tells the reader more in a few pages than most lengthy historical tomes do in a hundred. These are not essays for scholars only, but they will engage the interest and imaginations of general readers and students alike. (M. Thomas Inge, Randolph-Macon College; editor of Company Aytch: Or, a Side Show of the Big Show)

This treasure trove of literary discovery is a pleasure to read. Only David Madden, from his unique perspective as observer and critic, could bring such insight into the imaginative works by homegrown writers of the great mid-nineteenth-century American drama. (Ron Maxwell, director of Gettysburg, Gods and Generals, and Copperhead)

'From literary criticism on the state of Civil War scholarship to the fictional struggles of a veteran searching for meaning, Madden has constructed a volume that demonstrates the difficulties, and opportunities, Americans face while exploring their country’s web of past, present, and future... .As founder of the United States Civil War Center, a research institute designed to study the war from all perspectives, Madden has put his intellectual money where his literary mouth is. " (Chapter16)

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Book Description ROWMAN LITTLEFIELD, United States, 2015. Hardback. Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. This unique collection of writings by the celebrated author David Madden provides a multitude of reflections on the Civil War and Reconstruction, from nonfiction to fiction. Included are Madden s examination of key works by historians James McPherson and Fletcher Pratt, the story of the effort to simultaneously burn nine bridges by nine unionist guerrilla bands in the most complicated and coordinated guerrilla tactic of the war, and rediscoveries of both classic and contemporary works of Civil War fiction from William Faulkner, Joseph Stanley Pennell, and more. Alongside these essays are pieces from Madden s Civil War novel, Sharpshooter, which illustrate the interconnectedness of fiction and nonfiction. This meshing of iconoclastic and controversial pieces includes varied perspectives on every aspect of the war and reconstruction, from culture and civilian life to an imagining of Abraham Lincoln s critique of how historians have recorded the war and its aftermath. By exploring this web of perception, we can better understand the war and, in turn, shed greater light on the present and the future. Seller Inventory # ANB9781442243484

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