Reconstruction

Reconstruction

Reconstruction

Reconstruction

Synopsis

Few periods in American history have aroused as much debate as the years immediately after the Civil War. The victorious North had to determine how to treat the vanquished South and how to make a nation whole once again. The divisive issues of freedom and civil rights became even more complex than before the War and dominated national politics. Before it was all over, a president was impeached (though not convicted), and a rigorous plan for Reconstruction was enacted, then allowed to fade as white Southerners regained power and instituted repressive Jim Crow governments. This resource provides an overview essay on the period, six essays on various aspects of Reconstruction, a section of biographies of important players, and selected and introduced primary documents.

Excerpt

American statesman Adlai Stevenson stated, [We can chart our future clearly and wisely only when we know the path which has led to the present.] This series, Greenwood Guides to Historic Events, 1500–1900, is designed to illuminate that path by focusing on events from 1500 to 1900 that have shaped the world. The years 1500 to 1900 include what historians call the Early Modern Period (1500 to 1789, the onset of the French Revolution) and part of the modern period (1789 to 1900).

In 1500, an acceleration of key trends marked the beginnings of an interdependent world and the posing of seminal questions that changed the nature and terms of intellectual debate. The series closes with 1900, the inauguration of the twentieth century. This period witnessed profound economic, social, political, cultural, religious, and military changes. An industrial and technological revolution transformed the modes of production, marked the transition from a rural to an urban economy, and ultimately raised the standard of living. Social classes and distinctions shifted. The emergence of the territorial and later the national state altered man's relations with and view of political authority. The shattering of the religious unity of the Roman Catholic world in Europe marked the rise of a new pluralism. Military revolutions changed the nature of warfare. The books in this series emphasize the complexity and diversity of the human tapestry and include political, economic, social, intellectual, military, and cultural topics. Some of the authors focus on events in U.S. history such as the Salem witchcraft trials, the American Revolution, the abolitionist movement, and the Civil War. Others analyze European topics, such as the Reformation and Counter-Reformation and the French Revolution. Still others . . .

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