White Society in the Antebellum South

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Longman, 1985 - 216 pages
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"In this book Bruce Collins adopts a fresh perspective to re-examine white society in the American South before the Civil War. He starts with the central fact that Southern whites displayed considerable unity of purpose in fighting the Civil War; and he looks back at the generation of white Southerners before the conflict to analyse the social bonds that helped to draw these people together. By examining a large body of scholarly work on the antebellum South, and a diverse sample of original sources, he is able to offer a broadly based and argued explanation of the emergence of a Southern identity from a loosely structured, often contrasting and lightly governed society. Factors which Dr. Collins sees as essential to an understanding of Southern attitudes include those of obvious importance, such as cotton culture, family life, and racial thinking stimulated by slavery, together with less frequently analysed social bonds--for example the Indian presence, historical consciousness, physical and social mobility and respectability. These and other topics are fully explored by Dr. Collins in this stimulating volume, which will be welcomed not only by the student and professional historian, but also by anyone interested in the history of the American South."--Back cover.

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A South of many Souths

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