In the Name of God and Country: Reconsidering Terrorism in American History

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In this provocative book, Michael Fellman argues that terrorism, in various forms, has been a constant and crucial driving force in America from the Civil War to the present day.

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Editorial Reviews

History News Network

— Jeremy Kuzmarov
Vancouver Sun

In the Name of God and Country is essential reading for anyone interested in the roots of terrorist violence.”--Vancouver Sun

Publishers Weekly
Fellman (Inside War) examines the “central” role of terrorism “in the development of the American state” in this provocative academic treatise. Defining terrorism broadly as “overlapping forms of political violence”—i.e., an interchange between state and nonstate actors—Fellman offers five historical case studies that demonstrate “the underlying currents of terrorism intrinsic to the formation of American society.” The detailed case studies cover the expected episodes: the radical abolitionist John Brown's 1859 raid on the federal armory at Harper's Ferry, Va.; Union Gen. William T. Sherman's “scorched earth” march through Georgia; the white-supremacist—e.g., Ku Klux Klan, Mississippi White Line—campaign against Reconstruction; the 1886 Haymarket Square affair; and the Philippines War of 1899–1902. Fellman shows that throughout American history “the uses of political violence have been motivated by religious certitude coupled with psychological anxiety.” In a brief coda, the author argues that “these historical cases created the political template for modern-day American terrorism following September 11.” Although at times Fellman overstates the primacy of terrorism in shaping American institutions, this is a thoughtful and compelling re-evaluation of terrorism's long and often profound influence in our history. (Jan.)
New England Book Festival

Honorable Mention in the Non-Fiction category of the 2009 New England Book Festival sponsored by the Larimar St. Croix Writers Colony, The Hollywood Creative Directory; eDivvy, Shopanista and Westside Websites

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780300168020
  • Publisher: Yale University Press
  • Publication date: 11/30/2010
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 288
  • Product dimensions: 5.80 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Michael Fellman is professor of history emeritus at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver, British Columbia.
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Table of Contents

Introduction 1

1 John Brown: Slavery and Terrorism 14

2 Terrorism and Civil War 57

3 Blood Redemption: The Counterrevolutionary White-Terrorist Destruction of Reconstruction 97

4 The Haymarket: Terrorism and Class Conflict 143

5 The Philippines War: Terrorism and Empire 186

Coda 232

Note on Terms 237

Notes 245

Index 265

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    Posted December 14, 2009

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