My interpretation of the Civil War was that it was mostly a class war between Northern industrial bourgeois class capitalism and Southern agrarian gentry class quasi-feudalism over which form of slavery and imperialism would dominate the future expansionism of the USA.
The Civil War involved both the Northern and Southern ruling classes using conscript armies (slaves) to advance their respective class interests concerning whether the model of agrarian/caste/chattel slavery or the model of industrial/class/wage slavery would be the dominant model of economic expansion into the Native American nations, the Caribbean, Latin America, and the Pacific (imperialism).
Ideologically, the Civil War involved the importation of the French Revolution into North America in a war against Southern traditionalism (which shared more in common with Southern European traditionalism of the Latin countries than with the Enlightenment liberalism of England, Holland, and France).
Lysander Spooner’s “pox on all their houses” attitude toward the Civil War was correct.
Kevin M. Levin, Smithsonian Magazine
Walking the Gettysburg battlefield today, it’s easy to imagine the Union and Confederate armies dueling for control of the Pennsylvania town and its surrounding picturesque fields and rocky hills for three days in July 1863.
Categories: History and Historiography