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William Freehling

In 2007, the Oxford University Press published the second and concluding volume of Professor William W. Freehling’s Road to Disunion, subtitled Secessionists Triumphant, 1854-1861 (a main selection of the History Book Club, a Washington Post Notable Book of the year, a New York Times Sunday Book Review Editor’s Choice, and winner of the Hodges Prize). The first volume of Road to Disunion, subtitled Secessionists at Bay, 1776-1854 and published in 1990, was also a History Book Club main selection and was winner of the Owsley Prize. Together with The South versus the South: How Southern Anti-Confederates Shaped the Course of the Civil War (appearing in 2002 and winner of the Jefferson Davis Prize), The  Road to Disunion  reinterprets the causes of the Civil War and of Confederate defeat. These books, researched on a Guggenheim Foundation fellowship,  bring to climax a lifetime’s work on the Old South, begun forty years ago with the publication of Prelude to Civil War; The Nullification Controversy in South Carolina (winner of the Nevins and Bancroft Prizes). He is now writing a book of essays on the Civil War  and a biography of Abraham Lincoln,  entitled THE FALLS AND RISES OF ABRAHAM LINCOLN.