About the Author(s)
Elizabeth R. Varon, is Langbourne M. Williams Professor of American History, University of Virginia
Elizabeth R. Varon is Langbourne M. Williams Professor of American History and a member of the Executive Council of the John L. Nau III Center for Civil War History at the University of Virginia.
"Elizabeth R. Varon's highly original and sweeping new study is one of the few histories of the war that deserve to be ranked as essential reading. Varon never veers too far from her overarching theme, but she has done her readers an enormous service by resisting the temptation to use 'deliverance' as a cudgel to reframe every last aspect of the war. When she returns periodically to her main argument, she does so with admirable deftness backed by persuasive research." - The Wall Street Journal
"Varon's main theme, offered in clear, straightforward prose, is that, contrary to what many have maintained, the Union tended to see the war as one of liberation" - a mission of freeing a broad mass of poor deluded whites (and, for some, enslaved blacks) from the thrall of a tiny elite of oligarchical slaveholders. Varon shows that we can often learn more about what led to victory from politics than from battles.
"This is some of the finest battle writing around, and a sweeping analysis of both United States and Confederate strategy and tactics."-The Washington Post"
"Armies of Deliverance argues that the Northern government's anti-slavery, Unionist political coalition created a message of liberation that was then taken up as its main reason for fighting the Civil War. Union armies embraced this liberation theme, claiming that a small coterie of wealthy planters deceived Southerners who did not own slaves into agreeing to secession. Summing Up: Recommended" - CHOICE
"This book is an enjoyable read, engaging and well researched ... This is a substantial contribution to our understanding of the motivations, strategies, tensions, controversies, and triumphs that had characterized their lives and experiences. This reviewer highly recommends this for anyone interested in the Civil War." - David Marshall, The NYMAS Review
"This is not a traditional story of North versus South but rather a story of North and South versus the Confederacy. Running alongside this revisionist narrative in Armies of Deliverance is a more-or-less straightforward political and military history of the Civil War, done very well. Varon creates thrilling set pieces of all the familiar battles and controversies." - The Christian Science Monitor