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The British Soldier in America: A Social History of Military Life in the Revolutionary Period

Sylvia Frey

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ISBN 10: 0292780400 / ISBN 13: 9780292780408
Published by Austin, TX: Univ of Texas Press, 1981
Condition: Good Hardcover
From Lee Madden, Book Dealer (Brattleboro, VT, U.S.A.)

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About this Item

Good+ HC in Good+ DJ. Dark blue clothover boards, gilt letters. Bright, clean covers and spine; very slight bow to front cover; tightly bound; light foxing on text block edges and on end papers; clean interior. DJ is clean and complete; light foxing on back cover and fold-in flaps and very light on front cover. 8vo, 211 pp; index, biblio. Bookseller Inventory # 15197

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Bibliographic Details

Title: The British Soldier in America: A Social ...

Publisher: Austin, TX: Univ of Texas Press

Publication Date: 1981

Binding: Hardcover

Book Condition:Good

Dust Jacket Condition: Good

Edition: 1st Edition

About this title

Synopsis:

In her investigation of the social history of the common British soldier in the era of the American Revolution, Sylvia Frey has extensively surveyed recruiting records, contemporary training manuals, statutes, and memoirs in an attempt to provide insight into the soldier's "life and mind." In the process she has discovered more about the common soldier than anyone thought possible: his social origins and occupational background, his size, age, and general physical condition, his personal economics and daily existence. Her findings dispel the traditional assumption that the army was made up largely of criminals and social misfits.

Special attention is given to soldiering as an occupation. Focusing on two of the major campaigns of the war—the Northern Campaign which culminated at Saratoga and the Southern Campaign which ended at Yorktown—Frey describes the human face of war, with particular emphasis on the physical and psychic strains of campaigning in the eighteenth century.

Perhaps the most important part of the work is the analysis of the moral and material factors which induced men to accept the high risks of soldiering. Frey rejects the traditional assumption that soldiers were motivated to fight exclusively by fear and force and argues instead that the primary motivation to battle was generated by regimental esprit, which in the eighteenth century substituted for patriotism. After analyzing the sources of esprit, she concludes that it was the sustaining force for morale in a long and discouraging war.

This book is a contribution to our understanding of the eighteenth century and should appeal not only to military historians but also to social and economic historians and to those interested in the history of medicine.

About the Author:

Sylvia Frey is Professor Emerita of History at Tulane University.

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Member of VABA. My books are General Stock, including First Editions, Fiction, and other Literature, though I concentrate on Politics and History. Specifically, I focus on Labor History; Radical History; Progressive History; Populism; Leftist Politics; Legal Studies; Law Books; Chinese, Cuban, Soviet and other Socialist Publications; Biographies in all of the preceding areas. I also buy & sell Vermont and New Hampshire related publications including: Town Histories, Biographies, Almanacs, Photo Journals, Magazines, Pamphlets, Tracts, and Fiction. I am always interested in acquiring books and collections in my specialty areas: Labor, Radicalism, Progressives, Populism, Anarchism, Leftists, Law, and Socialism, as well as Vermont, New Hampshire, Western Massachusetts, and Upstate New York related materials.

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