May the Lord Shield and Protect Us from the Terrible Storm Ahead of Us: Elite South Carolina Women's Anticipation of Secession and War, 1860-1861

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Abstract

This essay examines the letters and diaries of elite South Carolina women from September 1860 to February 1861, during which the state seceded and eventually helped found the Confederacy. Women used emotional and religious language to express their own political consciousness without transgressing their proper societal roles. Examining their fears and anguish as Abraham Lincoln's election, and then secession, approached, I argue that women astutely anticipated war and violence in ways often more prescient than their male counterparts as they were unfettered by masculine ideals of honor. This emotions history shines necessary light on women during secession, a topic often overlooked by scholars of secession.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)981-1004
Number of pages24
JournalJournal of American Studies
Volume54
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2020
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities(all)
  • Social Sciences(all)

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