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Cambridge University Press
Online publication date:
August 2022
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Book description

The legacies of the Civil War and Reconstruction remain a central part of American life a century and a half later. Drawing together leading scholars in literary studies and history, this volume offers accessible treatments of major authors and genres of this period, including Walt Whitman, Frances Ellen Watkins Harper, Rebecca Harding Davis, Frederick Douglass, and Charles Chesnutt, as well as fiction, poetry, drama, and life-writing. Although focused on literature, this Companion also canvases battlefields, homefronts, and hospitals, and discusses a range of topics, including constitutional reform and presidential impeachment; emancipation and Africa; material culture and monuments; education, civil rights, and reenactment. The Cambridge Companion to the Literature of the American Civil War and Reconstruction speaks powerfully to literature's ability to help readers come to terms with a violent, oppressive history while also imagining a different future.

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