The Civil War in Art and Memory Kirk Savage

Publication date:
31 May 2016
NGW-Stud Hist Art
292 pages: 279 x 222mm
88 color + 57 b-w illus.
Sales territories:


Reflecting on the sesquicentennial of the American Civil War, this notable book brings together a range of media and perspectives that show how the conflict has been recorded and remembered over time. Fifteen essays written by leading scholars in a variety of disciplines explore visual representations of the war and its remembrance from the mid-19th century to the present.
The text is organized in four sections on the themes of home, the battlefield, public space, and heroism.  Within these, famous images such as Antietam battlefield photography are presented in a new light, and discussions of lesser-known works—ranging from newspaper illustrations to stained glass windows to public sculpture—underscore their contemporary relevance to the war’s most problematic legacies. Four of the essays focus on one of the central commemorations of the war, Augustus Saint-Gaudens’s memorial to Robert Gould Shaw in Boston, and its multiple meanings and interpretations. 

Kirk Savage is professor of history of art and architecture at the University of Pittsburgh.

“[The Civil War in Art and Memory] offer[s] nuanced, complicated, and wholly believable views into a time and place agitated by frustration, fear, and anger. . . . Essays like these are not merely works of historical analysis, but deep interrogations of America’s political self.”—Kenneth Hartvigsen, Panorama

“A lush, provocative new book . . . [that] brings us fifteen thoughtful essays, all richly illustrated.”—Stephen Davis, Civil War News