Prologue to a series
Blight contended that competing memories warred with each other in the decades that followed Appomattox, and ultimately, the version of the war that survives today gives short shrift to the war’s true meaning. In large part because of Blight’s work, historic interpretation in the last decade has shifted to focus more on race-related narratives of the war instead of the reconciliation narratives that focused on soldier bravery, devotion to comrades, and the horror of battle shared by both sides.
With Blight’s new book, American Oracle, recently released, ECW thought it would be a good opportunity to look back at Race & Reunion. In a week-long series beginning Monday, contributors Matt Stanley, James Broomall, Chris Mackowski, and Ashley Whitehead will examine the book, its impact, and its legacy after ten years. We look forward to your contributions, too, through our comment threads.