Michael Perman is Professor of History and Research Professor in the Humanities at the University of Illinois at Chicago. He received his B.A. from Oxford University and Ph.D. from the University of Chicago, where his dissertation adviser was the late John Hope Franklin. He has published three books on the late nineteenth century South: REUNION WITHOUT COMPROMISE: THE SOUTH AND RECONSTRUCTION, 1865-1868 (1973); THE ROAD TO REDEMPTION: SOUTHERN POLITICS, 1869-1879 (1984), which won three book prizes; and STRUGGLE FOR MASTERY: DISFRANCHISEMENT IN THE SOUTH, 1888-1908 (2001). He has also written EMANCIPATION AND RECONSTRUCTION (2003) and, more recently, PURSUIT OF UNITY: A POLITICAL HISTORY OF THE AMERICAN SOUTH (2010). Perman was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship in 1979-80 and was appointed the John Adams Distinguished Professor of American History at Utrecht University in the Netherlands in 2002-2003. In 2007, he gave the 69th Series of the Fleming Lectures in Southern History, soon to be published by Louisiana State University Press.
I. Earlier Explanations The Need for Justification Alexander H. Stephens, The War for State Rights Henry Wilson, The Slave Power Conspiracy Frederick Douglass, A Battle of Principles and Ideas The Problem of Inevitability Charles and Mary Beard, The Approach of the Irrepressible Conflict Frank L. Owsley, The Irrepressible Conflict Avery O. Craven, The Repressible Conflict James G. Randall, The Blundering Generation II. Recent Explanations Political and Institutional Origins of the Sectional Conflict David Herbert Donald, An Excess of Democracy: The American Civil War and the Social Process Arthur Bestor, The American Civil War as a Constitutional Crisis Michael F. Holt, Party Dynamics and the Coming of the Civil War Kenneth M. Stampp, The Irrepressible Conflict Social and Economic Origins of the Sectional Conflict Elizabeth Fox-Genovese and Eugene D. Genovese, The Southern Slaveholders Against the Modern World Barrington Moore, Jr., The American Civil War: The Last Capitalist Revolution Gavin Wright, The Economics of Cotton, Slavery, and the Civil War Cultural and Ideological Origins of the Sectional Conflict Eric Foner, Politics, Ideology, and the Origins of the Civil War James M. McPherson, The Distinctiveness of the Old South Kenneth S. Greenberg, Anglophobia, Southern Nationalism, and the Sectional Conflict George M. Fredrickson, White Supremacy and the American Sectional Conflict The Secession Crisis Steven A. Channing, Secession in South Carolina Bertram Wyatt-Brown, Honor and Secession Daniel W. Crofts, The Unionist Offensive David M. Potter, Why the Republicans Rejected Both Compromise and Secession Kenneth M. Stampp, The Republicans' Policy: A Reply to David M. Potter Phillip S. Paludan, The American Civil War as a Crisis of Law and Order Suggestions for Further Reading