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JOIN US FOR AN ONLINE PRESENTATION ON TUESDAY, JANUARY 26, 2021, AT 7:15 P.M.

PROFESSOR GARY W. GALLAGHER WILL PRESENT ON "THE ENDURING CIVIL WAR. EXPLORING THE GREAT AMERICAN CRISIS." 

For more than a decade, Gary W. Gallagher, the John L. Nau III Professor of History Emeritus of the University of Virginia,  has written a 1,000-word essay for every issue of Civil War Times.  

 

As a group, these essays have afforded an opportunity to bridge the gap between the academic and popular worlds of Civil War interest. Writing the essays allowed Professor Gallagher to place our contemporary understanding of the Civil War in conversation with testimony from people in the United States and the Confederacy who experienced and described it. Put another way, he investigated how mid-19th-Century perceptions align with, or deviate from, some of those we now hold regarding the origins, conduct, and aftermath of the war.

A number of his essays proved controversial, challenging, among other things, commonly held notions about Gettysburg and Vicksburg as decisive turning points, U. S. Grant as a general who profligately wasted Union manpower, the Gettysburg Address as a watershed that turned the war from a fight for Union into one for Union and emancipation, and Robert E. Lee as an old-fashioned general ill-suited to waging a modern mid-19th-Century war. 

The tension between history and memory forms a theme throughout the essays that highlights the importance of what actually happened, while also showing that successive generations remember historical events and personalities in starkly different ways. I also argue that only by coming to terms with the Civil War, as well as with how people have remembered and used it in politics and popular culture, can anyone understand the broader arc of United States history. Finally, writing the essays allowed me to share my enthusiasm for studying the war with an audience I knew held similar interests.

 

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Gary W. Gallagher, a third-generation Californian born in Glendale, is the John L. Nau III Professor of History Emeritus at the University of Virginia. He has written or edited more than forty books about the era of the Civil War and its memory, including The Confederate War (1997), Causes Won, Lost, and Forgotten: How Hollywood and Popular Art Shape What We Know about the Civil War (2008), The Union War (2011), The American War: A History of the Civil War Era (2nd ed., 2019; co-authored with Joan Waugh), and The Enduring Civil War: Exploring the Great American Crisis (2020). He also edited the first ten volumes of the "Military Campaigns of the Civil War" series at the University of North Carolina Press.

THIS PRESENTATION IS EXCLUSIVELY ONLINE

COVID-19 may have interrupted our monthly in-person meetings; but it will not prevent us from hearing a wonderful presentation this month!

Pasadena CWRT - Tuesday, JANUARY 26, 2021
7:15 PM - 9:00 PM (PDT)

Pasadena CWRT Virtual Meeting

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