When the Fires Burned Too Close to Home: Southern Women and the Dislocations of the Home Front in the American Civil War

TitleWhen the Fires Burned Too Close to Home: Southern Women and the Dislocations of the Home Front in the American Civil War
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2017
AuthorsGrant, Susan-Mary
JournalWomen's History Review
Volume26
Issue4
Pagination568 - 583
Date Published04/2016
Abstract

For southern women during the American Civil War, the concept of home front and battlefront was often a distinction without a difference. What had been domestic space became, over the course of the conflict, military, medical and memorial space. As their homes became hospitals and their gardens, graveyards, many found themselves adrift. Whether as white refugees, fleeing the invading armies, or as slaves, fleeing toward freedom, theirs was a dislocated world, positioned between home front and battlefront, between slavery and freedom. Approaching the Civil War through its dislocations, however, allows us to see more clearly not just the class, gender, and political distinctions on the southern home front, but the ways in which the war opened up a new conceptual space for freedwomen in the post-war nation; one created by an imperative toward domestic stability that was driven as much by the Union armies and the federal government as by southern women themselves.

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Short TitleWomen's History Review
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