Scars of Independence: America’s Violent Birth
By Holger Hoock 2017
About the Author
Holger Hoock was educated at Freiburg and Cambridge and received his doctorate from Oxford. He currently serves as the J. Carroll Amundson Professor of British History and Associate Dean for Graduate Studies and Research in the Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences at the University of Pittsburgh. An elected fellow of the Royal Historical Society, Hoock has recently been a Kluge Fellow at the Library of Congress; visiting scholar at Corpus Christi College, Oxford; and senior fellow at the Institute for Advanced Study, University of Konstanz.
About the Book
In Scars of Independence, Hoock writes the violence back into the story of the Revolution. American Patriots persecuted and tortured Loyalists. British troops massacred enemy soldiers and raped colonial women. Prisoners were starved on disease-ridden ships and in subterranean cells. African-Americans fighting for or against independence suffered disproportionately, and Washington’s army waged a genocidal campaign against the Iroquois.
In vivid, authoritative prose, Hoock’s new reckoning also examines the moral dilemmas posed by this all-pervasive violence, as the British found themselves torn between unlimited war and restraint toward fellow subjects, while the Patriots documented war crimes in an ingenious effort to unify the fledgling nation. For two centuries we have whitewashed this history of the Revolution. Scars of Independence forces a more honest appraisal, revealing the inherent tensions between moral purpose and violent tendencies in America’s past. In so doing, it offers a new origins story that is both relevant and necessary — an important reminder that forging a nation is rarely bloodless.
CLICK HERE TO
Access this book for online reading or download for offline reading. Subscribers can access more than 100 books:
biography, economics, history, philosophy, religion, & science. New titles added frequently.
Andrew O’Shaughnessy, University of Virginia, and author of The Men Who Lost America says, “It is difficult to extricate the Revolutionary War from the romance of national mythology, but Holger Hoock offers an important correction in Scars of Independence, the first book to examine the tragic and shocking role of violence in the conflict.”
John Ferling, author of Whirlwind: The American Revolution and the War That Won It says, “Scars of Independence is a brilliant comprehensive history of the Revolutionary War that accents how this bloody and destructive conflict touched the lives of ordinary men and women. Holger Hoock’s account goes beyond well-known Founding Fathers at war to show the violence and terror that befell soldiers and civilians on both sides. This is an important book that should be read by all who seek a better understanding of the true nature of America’s War of Independence.”
Stephen Conway, University College London, and author of The British Isles and the War of American Independence says, “War by definition is about violence, but Holger Hoock’s brilliantly written book is perhaps the first to use violence as its main focus for understanding the War of American Independence. He highlights some truly shocking instances of violence — on both sides — in a gripping (if at times stomach-churning) account. All students of the American Revolution and its war should read this book.”
This book’s popularity is demonstrated in the fact that its Amazon Customer Reviews rate it an average of 4.5 out of 5 stars from 190 ratings