Monday, December 7, 2015

Booknotes: Excommunicated from the Union

New Arrival:

Excommunicated from the Union: How the Civil War Created a Separate Catholic America by William B. Kurtz (Fordham Univ Pr, 2015).

I seem to recall at least three Catholic-themed Civil War studies published this year. "Exploring how Catholics sought to use their participation in the war to counteract religious and political nativism in the United States, Excommunicated from the Union reveals that while the war was an alienating experience for many of 200,000 Catholics who served, they still strove to construct a positive memory of their experiences in order to show that their religion was no barrier to their being loyal American citizens." Looks like a pretty broad survey. Chapters explore Catholics and the Mexican War, the Catholic response in the North to secession, Catholic soldiers, priests and nuns in the war effort, views on slavery, opposition to the war, and post-war anti-Catholicism.

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