The Killer Angels By Michael Shaara Essay

The Killer Angels By Michael Shaara Essay

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The Killer Angles
The novel The Killer Angels by Michael Shaara depicts the story behind one of the most significant and bloodiest battles of the American Civil War. The Battle of Gettysburg consisted of 51,000-casualties between the Union and Confederate army forces. Mainly focused on letters, journal entries, and memoirs, Shaara tells the story of Gettysburg by using characters from both sides of the “spectrum”, the Confederate and Union army. These characters grasp the revolving points of view about the impending days of the war. Such points are casted from characters, as the confederates own General Lee, General Longstreet, the Unions own Colonel Chamberlain, and soldiers from both sides. From those depicted in the novel, with several of accounts, Shaara pulls apart some of the most critical fictionalized, descriptive evidence from the war and molds them into different perspectives to tell the story of Gettysburg through the eyes of himself, as if he was actually there.
Throughout the novel, the question about the reasoning behind the civil war varies from both sides. From the perspective of Colonel Chamberlain, Chamberlain believes that slavery is one of the curses of nobility traced back to the horror of old Europe, and that the south was now fighting to transport slavery unto new soil, ultimately “forming a new aristocracy”. Chamberlain declared that fighting the war at Gettysburg is the right thing to do. He also feels that the union is a different kind of army, one that it out to set other men free, with beliefs that the free ground should not be divided by a line determining what are free and slave states. In context, I think that Chamberlain is essentially getting around to the point that those of the union army are...


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...t a “freed blacks will turn out no better than many of the whites that are fighting to free them.” Kilrain, a foreigner himself feels an obligation to fight this war to prove to others that “he is a better man than many, whether he is distinctly referring to the blacks is very possible, since the northerners are now worried about freed blacks taking job opportunities away.
Throughout the novel, I feel as if the south never collectively address its ideas about slavery other than it being a political liberty that the southern states have a right to possess. However, General Lee surely expresses his thoughts about the black race. Although Lee does not own any slaves nor believes in the institution, maybe considering he is a scripture quoting man, “he does not believe that the Negro, in the present stage of his development, can be considered the equal of a white man.”


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