On the Road to Total War: The American Civil War and the German Wars of Unification, 1861-1871

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On the Road to Total War is a collection of essays that attempts to trace the roots and development of total industrialized warfare (which terrorizes citizens and soliders alike). International scholars focus on the social, political, economic, and cultural aspects and on the societal impacts of the American Civil War and the German Wars of Unification. Mass mobilization of people and resources and growing nationalism led to this totalization of war in nineteenth-century industrialized nations.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"...a rich, indeed profound, study of war in its many aspects. In their exploration of such issues as mass mobilization, civil-military relations, and popular attitudes to war, many of these essays shed light on issues that remain with militaries to this day. This is comparative history and collective scholarship at its very best." Eliot A. Cohen, Foreign Affairs

"The editors of this massive volume have tackled several controversial issues at once and, to send a resume ahead, the result is at least interesting, sometimes refreshing and thought-provoking, and often enlightening." Wolfgang Hochbruck, H-Net Reviews

"This large book is a colection of exceptionally well researched and thoughtful essays....rewards reading from cover to cover." Michael J. Zeps, History

"...the book as a whole is a major contribution to the historiography of war, significantly expanding our understanding of the Civil War and the German Wars of Unification." Mackubiun Thomas Owens, Washington Times

" On the Road to Total War is a substantial and hansomely produced volume, based on a 1992 conference sponsered by the German Historical Institute, Washington, D.C. ...the resulting publication is a valuable compendium of views. This is a stimulating book, including material of value, not just in the political and military conduct of the three wars, but on all aspects of societies and economies at war." Brian Holden Reid, Military History

"...students...will value important essays on Civil War prisons..., mobilization of African Americans ..., and northern politics and abolition ...." Kentucky Historical Society

"The essays collected in On the Road to Total War make worthwhile reading for anyone interested in American of German history, or military history in general. [Förster and Nagler] have done a superb job of arranging the essays...[this collection] enlarges the understanding of what soldiers and civilians, generals and statesmen, and their contemporaries thought was at wtake in two major conflicts of the 19th century, how prepared they were to sacrifice blood or treasure to win, and whether in the end they believed that what was gained was worth the price." Joint Force Quarterly

"This seven-hundred-page volume is a fascinating,...collection of papers...." Peter Bergmann, Jrnl of American History

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Product Details

Table of Contents

1. Introduction Stig Forster and Jörg Nagler; Part I. Basic Questions: 2. Was the Civil War a Total War? Mark E. Neely Jr; 3. The American Civil War and the German Wars of Unification: the problem of comparison Carl Degler; Part II. Nationalism, Leadership, and War: 4. Confederate identity and the will to fight Richard E. Beringer; 5. Unionism and Abolition: political mobilization in the North Hans L. Trefousse; 6. The Prussian triangle of leadership in the face of people's war: a reassessment of the conflict between Bismarck and Moltke, 1870–71 Stig Forster; 7. Union generalship, political leadership, and Total War strategy Edward Hagerman; Part III. Mobilization and Warfare: 8. The Civil War armies: creation, mobilization, and development Herman M. Hattaway; 9. African-Americans and the mobilization for the Civil War Joseph T. Glatthaar; 10. The Civil War economy: a modern view Stanley L. Engerman and J. Matthew Gallman; 11. Industry and warfare in Prussia Ulrich Wengenroth; 12. The Prussian army from reform to war Manfred Messerschmidt; 13. French mobilization in 1870 William Serman; 14. From limited war to Total War in America James M. McPherson; 15. Remarks on the preconditions to waging war in Prussia-Germany, 1866–1871 Wilhelm Deist; Part IV. The Home Front: 16. Loyalty and dissent: the home front in the American Civil War Jorg Nagler; 17. 'The better angels of our nature': Lincoln, propaganda, and public opinion in the North during the Civil War Philip S. Paludan; 18. The permanence of internal war: the Prussian state and its opponents, 1870–71 Alf Ludtke; 19. French public opinion in 1870–71 and the emergence of Total War Stephane Audoin-Rouzeau; 20. Women and war in the Confederacy Donna Rebecca D. Krug; 21. German patriotic women's work in war and peacetime, 1864–1890 Jean H. Quataert; Part V. The Reality of War: 22. Tactics, trenches, and men in the Civil War Earl J. Hess; 23. Daily life at the front and the concept of Total War Thomas Rohkramer; 24. At the nihilist edge: reflections on guerrilla warfare during the American Civil War Michael Fellman; 25. The wars against Paris Robert Tombs; 26. 'Our prison system, supposing we had any': the Confederate and Union prison systems Reid Mitchell; 27. French prisoners of war in Germany, 1870–71 Manfred Botzenhart; Part VI. The Legacy: 28. The influence of the German Wars of Unification upon the United States Jay Luvaas; 29. From Civil War to world power: perceptions and realities, 1865–1914 Richard N. Current; 30. The myth of Gambetta and the 'people's war' in Germany and France, 1871–1914 Gerd Krumeich; 31. War memorials: a legacy of Total War? Annette Becker; Conclusions: 32. The American Civil War and the German Wars of Unification: some parting shots Roger Chickering; Index.

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