A Warring Nation: Honor, Race, and Humiliation in America and Abroad

A Warring Nation: Honor, Race, and Humiliation in America and Abroad

by Bertram Wyatt-Brown


View All Available Formats & Editions
Members save with free shipping everyday! 
See details


In this culminating work of a long and distinguished career,
historian Bertram Wyatt-Brown looks at the theme of honor—a subject on which he was the acknowledged expert—and places it in a broader historical and cultural context than ever before.

Wyatt-Brown begins with the contention that honor cannot be understood without considering the role of humiliation, which not only sets victor apart from vanquished but drives the search for vindication that is integral to notions of honor. The American conception of honor is further deepened by issues of race. The author turns to the slave South to show how white and black concepts of honor differed from and contradicted each other, illuminating honor’s elusive but powerful role in our society.

He then goes on to explore these themes within a wide range of military and political contexts, from the Revolutionary War to Desert Storm, providing new insights on how honor drove decision making during many defining events in our history that continue to reverberate in the American mind.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780813934747
Publisher: University of Virginia Press
Publication date: 01/01/2014
Pages: 256
Product dimensions: 9.20(w) x 6.10(h) x 1.70(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

The late Bertram Wyatt-Brown was Richard J. Milbauer Professor of History
Emeritus at the University of Florida and the author of numerous works of Southern history, including the Pulitzer Prize–nominated Southern Honor: Ethics and
Behavior in the Old South.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments vii

Introduction 1

1 African American Male Slaves' Honor: Lost and Regained in War 13

2 White Male Honor, Shame, and Shamelessness in the Old South 44

3 America's Antebellum Wars, 1776-1848: Rationale and Conduct 62

4 Honor, Humiliation, and the American Civil War 80

5 Reconstruction: Southern White Humiliation and Revenge for Defeat 106

6 America as World Power, 1898-1918: Honor, Race, and Humiliation 126

7 Honor, Race, and Humiliation in World War II and Korea 151

8 Honor and Shame in Vietnam and Iraq 172

Conclusion 191

Notes 195

Index 237

Customer Reviews