Tag Archives: Edward L. Ayers
Ed Ayers, historian of the American South and president of the University of Richmond, lectures Wednesday morning in the Amphitheater. Photo by Megan Tan.

Ayers: Southern logic allowed for no choice but to secede from Union

“There might seem to be a non sequitur in the title of my lecture, ‘The Logic of Secession,’” Edward Ayers said to open his lecture at 10:45 a.m. Wednesday in the Amphitheater. “How could there actually be a logic of taking the United States apart?”

Ayers’ lecture focused on discerning the logic that led the Southern states to secede. As a historian, Ayers has focused on the history of the South.

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Ed Ayers

Ayers to speak on viewing Civil War with new eyes

Chances are most Chautauquans learned about the Civil War in a traditional classroom setting, with textbooks and lectures and written homework. In 1993, as the Internet was beginning to take off, Ed Ayers began a digital history project, The Valley of the Shadow: Two Communities in the American Civil War, that offered a new vehicle for a continued education.

Projects like these utilize modern technology to engage in the Civil War with a fresh perspective, Ayers said.

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Edward L. Ayers

A New Civil War

The Sesquicentennial of the Civil War and Emancipation presents us with the opportunity and the obligation to think about the Civil War in some new ways. Over the 50 years since the Centennial, we have deepened our understanding of the Civil War to a remarkable extent. Whether at the level of accessible biography or arcane technical history, the frames of reference of 1960 have been replaced with a complexity befitting the remarkable social changes of the last half-century. Our understanding of the Civil War has steadily become more interesting and more challenging.

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