Madness Rules the Hour (inbunden)
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Madness Rules the Hour (inbunden)

Madness Rules the Hour

Charleston, 1860, and the Mania for War

Inbunden Engelska, 2017-04-27
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In the mid-1800s, Charleston, South Carolina, embodied the combustible spirit of the slave South. No city was more fervently attached to slavery, and no city was seen by the North as a greater threat of rebellion. And so, in 1860, with Abraham Lincoln's election looming, Charleston's leaders faced a climactic decision: they could submit to abolition-or they could drive South Carolina out of the Union and hope that the rest of the South would follow. Madness Rules the Hour tells the story of how Charleston succumbed to war fever as its leaders demanded secession and its white masses joined in the uprising with a wild excitement. Through in-depth research and vibrant storytelling, Paul Starobin brings to life the city's propagandists, politicians, populists, and pro-slavery pastor to chart the relentless progress of the contagion. The result is a portrait of a culture in crisis and an insightful investigation into the folly that fractured the Union and started the Civil War-with echoes in our raucous politics today.
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"Starobin's narrative is readable and lively; he is skilled at creating setting and character description. Recommended for those interested in the Civil War and its causes.--Library Journal "[A] gripping new narrative history...[a] bracing, seamlessly narrated account of the hysterical events in Charleston in 1860..."--Washington Times "'Madness Rules the Hour, ' Paul Starobin's fast-paced, engagingly written account of the hysteria that descended on lovely Charleston--where the unthinkable became the inevitable--is as much a study in group psychology as it is in history...The conductors of this movement were the city's elite, whom Starobin presents in finely drawn portraits."--New York Times Book Review "Charleston was the fuse that exploded the powder keg of secession. Starobin's rich, sweeping portrait of a city and its people on the brink brings us as close as possible to those frightful, red-hot passions of that fateful time. This book has much to teach us about the dangerous contagion spread by ideology and war fever."--Marc Wortman, author of The Bonfire and 1941 "This book is a gem-a tightly written account of Southern 'war fever' in Charleston during the fateful year of 1860. This terrifying and well-told tale reveals the viral power of hate, and how it can crush a supposedly rational society in its grip."--Alex Beam, columnist for the Boston Globe and author of The Feud "As the birthplace of disunion and the cradle of rebellion, the city of Charleston long claimed a perverse, myth-encrusted pride in launching a noble 'revolution' against 'Northern aggression'and federal overreach. Starobin has exploded this magnolia-suffused legend by convincingly portraying Charleston as a cauldron of disloyalty, extremism, and vicious white supremacy. Boasting fresh research and riveting characters, this vivid account of the feverish run-up to the Civil War sets the record straight with panache. The book should take its place as the definitive account of the hysteria that nearly destroyed, but in the end transformed, the United States."--Harold Holzer, winner of the Lincoln Prize "Charleston in 1860 was a lovely, civilized, gracious city poisoned by tribalism, conspiracy theories, and the evil of slavery. With a clear, sharp eye, Starobin takes us back to this strange time and place and tells a riveting, tragic story."--Evan Thomas, author of Being Nixon "A dramatic and engaging addition to Civil War studies that serves as a fitting bookend paired with Jay Winik's account of the end of the war, April 1865 (2001)."--Kirkus Reviews, STARRED REVIEW "'South Carolina is too small for a Republic, ' wrote James Petigru in 1860, 'but too large for an insane asylum.' Starobin has skillfully chronicled the mass psychology in favor of secession that built to a climax after Lincoln's election and led the state out of the Union."--James M. McPherson, author of Pulitzer Prize-winning Battle Cry of Freedom

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Paul Starobin has been a frequent contributor to the Atlantic and the New Republic and is a former Moscow bureau chief for Business Week. His writing has appeared in the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, and Washington Post, among others, and he is the author of After America: Narratives for the Next Global Age.