A1 - 1 Civil War Paper and Presentation Olen Henderson...

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1 Civil War Paper and Presentation Olen Henderson HST/155 U.S. History to 1865/ AAHL1IUZT3 November 16, 2015 Andrew Cramer
2 Introduction Historian Shelby Foote said, any understanding of this nation has to be based . . . on an  understanding of the Civil War. . . .  The Civil War defined us as what we are, and it opened us  to being what we became, good and bad things.  It is very necessary if you’re going to understand the American character in the 20 th   century to learn about this enormous catastrophe of the mid-19th century. It was the crossroads  of our being. What do you think Foote meant in the passage quoted above?  How does the Civil  War define the United States?  Level One Heading Well, this is something that we began to see creeping into the language of Americans during the course of the war, and it was reinforced by historians like Shelby Foote, who reminded us that if all the complicated causes and all the complex effects of the war are too difficult to ultimately comprehend, we can see The Civil War in very simple terms.            Before the war, in speaking about our country, we said, "The United States are" —  plural. We saw ourselves as a union, a stitched-together collection of states, a "many" thing.  After the war — though we ended slavery, we didn’t really end the question of race that has  bedeviled and ennobled our struggle — we then began to talk about America as a "one" thing, as  a nation. And we began to say something that is still to this day ungrammatical; we say, "The 

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