April Reading List

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Kinda heavy on the Civil War books...but really, would you expect otherwise? 

Hardtack and Coffee: Soldier's Life in the Civil War by John D. Billings. This is a classic written by a Union veteran - and maybe, just maybe, I am working on an essay about this book for future publication. Stay tuned :)

The Life of Johnny Reb and The Life of Billy Yank by Bell Irvin Wiley. Also classics, and go with the common soldier theme in my house this week. Paired with Billings, this set makes for excellent reading. 

The Thin Light of Freedom: The Civil War and Emancipation in the Heart of America by Edward L. Ayers. A beautifully written follow up to In the Presence of Mine Enemies, following the course of the last two years of war and its aftermath in Virginia and Pennsylvania counties. 

The Half has Never Been Told: Slavery and the Making of American Capitalism by Edward E. Baptist. For those of you (like yours truly) who wish to understand slavery's profound connection to the development of modern capitalism. 

Standing at Armageddon: A Grassroots History of the Progressive Era by Nell Irvin Painter. A book, originally published in the 1980s, that I believe resonates in today's politically charged class-consciousness era . 

Making Whiteness: The Culture of Segregation in the South by Grace Elizabeth Hale. An engaging look at the ways in which American identity is definitively white. 

The Mind of the Master Class: History and Faith in the Southern Slaveholder's Worldview by Elizabeth Fox-Genovese and Eugene D. Genovese. Wow. This book on the intellectual landscape - philosophy, literature, theology - kinda blew me away. Warning: you don't necessarily need an advanced degree to read this...but it wouldn't hurt. 

This Republic of Suffering: Death and the Civil War by Drew Gilpin Faust. This is brilliant look at how American came to terms with death on a massive, unparalleled scale. 

Freedom from Fear: The American People in Depression and War, 1929-1945 by David M. Kennedy. If you are going to read one book about the complexities of American life during this tumultuous time - this is it. And a side note - it saved me when I took my qualifying exams. 

Stamped from the Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America by Ibram X. Kendi. Some people think that institutionalized racism is a thing of the past. I think those people are confused. Read this book. Read it. 

Soooooo....this should keep you busy for a minute!