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This book fills a gap in Civil War literature on the strategies employed by the Union and Confederacy in the East, offering a more integrated interpretation of military operations that shows how politics, public perception, geography, and logistics shaped the course of military operations in the East.
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Brooks D. Simpson is ASU Foundation Professor of History at Arizona State University and the author of six books on the Civil War, including Let Us Have Peace: Ulysses S. Grant and the Politics of War and Reconstruction, 1861–1868; America's Civil War; and The Political Education of Henry Adams.Review:
"The Civil War in the East offers the sort of fresh thinking and provocative analyses of generals, presidents, and events that scholars have come to expect from its author. Informative, solidly researched, well-written, and unfailingly interesting, it will further solidify Brooks Simpson's place as one of this generation's outstanding scholars of the Civil War." (Ethan S. Rafuse, author of McClellan's War: The Failure of Moderation and the Struggle for the Union and Robert E. Lee and the Fall of the Confederacy, 1863-1865.)
"Brooks Simpson's The Civil War in the East offers readers a concise and discerning narrative of the conflict's major military campaigns in the Eastern Theater. He stresses that it was a combination of drama, personality, and geography that made Northerners and Southerners believe that the East was more important than the West. That perception has endured, but as Simpson convincingly shows, it is not to be easily discounted. The Civil War in the East is an informative, lively and engaging text for scholars and students alike." (Lesley J. Gordon, Coauthor of "This Terrible War": The Civil War and its Aftermath)
"An excellent overview of the Civil War in the Eastern Theater that effectively incorporates detailed analysis of the interplay of the political and military aspects of the war, including the politics of army command, into a single volume. Highly recommended for anyone looking for a broad overview of the Civil War in the Eastern Theater of operations, and especially for those who are just beginning their studies of the defining conflict that made the United States what it is today." (Eric J. Wittenberg, author of Little Phil: A Reassessment of the Civil War Leadership of General Philip H. Sheridan)
"The vast literature on the Civil War's Eastern Theater leaves many potential readers uncertain about what to read first. The Civil War in the East offers a splendid solution to this dilemma. Brooks D. Simpson brings a sure mastery of the material, clarity of argument, and expressive prose to his task of exploring military events that featured many of the greatest battles and most famous commanders in American history." (Gary W. Gallagher, John L. Nau Professor of History, University of Virginia, and author of The Union War)
"A judicious and well-argued work of historical interpretation. . . . It serves as a balanced treatment of al ongstanding historiographical controversy over the relative importance of the western and eastern theaters in the war's outcome. Simpson argues that both northern and southern public opinion focused on the eastern theater, making it politically vital and of superior importance, even though the war's actual military outcome came to fruition in the west." (Wayne Wei-siang Hsieh, U.S. Naval Academy, in Civil War History)
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