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Changes and Transformations

by Freeman, Christopher Skye Issue: Spring 2006

The Spring 2006 Issue of the Civil War Book Review is highlighted by several important works in Civil War scholarship and fiction. The March, the latest novel by E.L. Doctorow, writer of some of the most significant Civil War novels in recent memory, is reviewed by June Pullium. Doctorow's novel dramatizes Sherman's March to the Sea and many of the important figures of that event and the era find a part within it. Also in this Issue, Frank Williams takes a look at Doris Kearns Goodwin's Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln, which demonstrates how Lincoln was able to form his cabinet and advisors out of many of his political opponents. Valerie Ziegler examines a work that adds another dimension from which to study Reconstruction, religion. Vale of Tears: New Essays on Religion and Reconstruction, is a collection of essays edited by Edward J. Blum and W. Scott Poole that tackles the role of religion in the reconstruction of the South. Another review of note is Confederate Emancipation: Southern Plans to Free and Arm Slaves during the Civil War by Bruce Levine. This work, reviewed by W. Fitzhugh Brundage, delves into the Confederacy's own plans for emancipation of the slaves and how the issue was divisive one during the war.

Among this Issues features and columns, Beth A. Salerno is interviewed about her book Sister Societies: Women's Antislavery Organizations in Antebellum America. Dr. Salerno answers questions on the history and tactics of female anti-slavery societies as well as how these organizations fit into the larger social movements of the 19th and early 20th centuries. Unique to this Issue's Perspectives column is an article entitle Blockading the American Confederacy, 1861-185: A Geo-Strategic Analysis by James D. Hardy Jr. and Leonard J. Hochberg, which will later be published in French in a book on the comparative history of blockades by Jean-David Avenal. Hardy and Hochberg examine the nature and the legal repercussions of the blockade in the Civil War. David Madden, in his Rediscovery column, reintroduces us to a collection of letters narrated and edited by Catherine S. Crary entitled Dear Belle: Letters from a Cadet and Officer to his Sweetheart, 1858-1865. Rounding out this Issue and our features is Leah Wood Jewett's Civil War Treasure's column. Jewett gives us a glance at a Civil War diary by a Texas soldier that confronts loneliness and uncertainty in the midst of war.

Once again, I must be biding ado to the Civil War Book Review. I have enjoyed my time as temporary editor. I would like to thank the reviewers, contributors, and especially the readers of the Civil War Book Review for making my second term as editor rewarding and enjoyable. We have recently been able to hire my replacement and new steward of the Review, Neal Novak. Please join me in welcoming Neal. He is originally from Plano, TX and received his BA in history from Texas A & M University as well as a MA in History from Louisiana State University. Neal has already assumed the duties as editor and has begun to put together our next issue. I am certain our publication is in good hands.

review of Changes and Transformations, by Freeman, Christopher Skye, Civil War Book Review, (Spring 2006).