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Daughters of the Union : northern women fight the Civil War / Nina Silber.

By: Silber, Nina.
Material type: TextTextPublisher: Cambridge, Mass. : Harvard University Press, 2005Description: 332 p. : ill. ; 22 cm.ISBN: 0674016777; 9780674016774.Other title: Northern women fight the Civil War.Subject(s): United States -- History -- Civil War, 1861-1865 -- Women | United States -- History -- Civil War, 1861-1865 -- Social aspects | Women -- Northeastern States -- History -- 19th century | Women -- Northeastern States -- Social conditions -- 19th century | Women -- Political activity -- Northeastern States -- Social conditions -- 19th century | Sex role -- Northeastern States -- History -- 19th centuryAdditional physical formats: Online version:: Daughters of the Union.DDC classification: 973.7/082/0974 LOC classification: E628 | .S55 2005Other classification: 15.85
Contents:
Summoned to War, Charged to Patriotism -- Loyalties in Conflict -- The Economic Battlefront -- Domesticity under Siege -- From Patriots to Partisans, and Back Again -- Aiding the Cause, Serving the State -- Saving the Sick, Healing the Nation -- Wartime Emancipation -- American Women and the Enduring Power of the State -- An Ambiguous Legacy.
Summary: Of the most overlooked and least understood participants in the American Civil War: the women of the North. Unlike their Confederate counterparts, who were often caught in the midst of the conflict, most Northern women remained far from the dangers of battle. Nonetheless, they enlisted in the Union cause on their home ground, and the experience transformed their lives. Nina Silber traces the emergence of a new sense of self and citizenship among the women left behind by Union soldiers. She offers a complex account, bolstered by women's own words from diaries and letters, of the changes in activity and attitude wrought by the war. Women became wage-earners, participants in partisan politics, and active contributors to the war effort. But even as their political and civic identities expanded, they were expected to subordinate themselves to male-dominated government and military bureaucracies. Silber's arresting tale fills an important gap in women's history. She shows the women of the North--many for the first time--discovering their patriotism as well as their ability to confront new economic and political challenges, even as they encountered the obstacles of wartime rule. The Civil War required many women to act with greater independence in running their households and in expressing their political views. It brought women more firmly into the civic sphere and ultimately gave them new public roles, which would prove crucial starting points for the late-nineteenth-century feminist struggle for social and political equality.
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Item type Current location Call number Status Date due Barcode
Book University of Texas At Tyler
Stacks - 3rd Floor
E628 .S55 2005 (Browse shelf) Available 0000001774579

Includes bibliographical references and index.

Summoned to War, Charged to Patriotism -- Loyalties in Conflict -- The Economic Battlefront -- Domesticity under Siege -- From Patriots to Partisans, and Back Again -- Aiding the Cause, Serving the State -- Saving the Sick, Healing the Nation -- Wartime Emancipation -- American Women and the Enduring Power of the State -- An Ambiguous Legacy.

Of the most overlooked and least understood participants in the American Civil War: the women of the North. Unlike their Confederate counterparts, who were often caught in the midst of the conflict, most Northern women remained far from the dangers of battle. Nonetheless, they enlisted in the Union cause on their home ground, and the experience transformed their lives. Nina Silber traces the emergence of a new sense of self and citizenship among the women left behind by Union soldiers. She offers a complex account, bolstered by women's own words from diaries and letters, of the changes in activity and attitude wrought by the war. Women became wage-earners, participants in partisan politics, and active contributors to the war effort. But even as their political and civic identities expanded, they were expected to subordinate themselves to male-dominated government and military bureaucracies. Silber's arresting tale fills an important gap in women's history. She shows the women of the North--many for the first time--discovering their patriotism as well as their ability to confront new economic and political challenges, even as they encountered the obstacles of wartime rule. The Civil War required many women to act with greater independence in running their households and in expressing their political views. It brought women more firmly into the civic sphere and ultimately gave them new public roles, which would prove crucial starting points for the late-nineteenth-century feminist struggle for social and political equality.

Reviews provided by Syndetics

CHOICE Review

According to Silber (Boston Univ.), present-day historians have too readily echoed Elizabeth Cady Stanton and the early suffragists in celebrating the Civil War for liberating Northern women from their homes and engaging them in activities such as nursing, work outside the home, and fund raising, which emphasized their civic, not domestic, roles. Carefully rereading Northern women's personal writings and benefiting from recent specialized monographs on women's wartime experiences, Silber concludes that the opportunities the war brought were accompanied with obligations to patriotically serve the nation, asking few questions and following the instructions of male officials. By putting the nation first, women were simply repeating what they had done within the household in putting the family first. Silber suggests that this nation-centered understanding of civic obligation continued long after the war. Engagingly written and sensitive to class and racial differences among women, the book offers a convenient overview of the way the war affected women's behavior and outlooks. Regrettably, it lacks a bibliography, but has extensive endnotes. ^BSumming Up: Recommended. Academic libraries serving upper-division undergraduates and above. P. F. Field Ohio University

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