Temporal Defeat, Divine Victory: The Origins of the Religion of the Lost Cause, 1860-1870
Davis, Andrew Patrick
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ABSTRACTTEMPORAL DEFEAT, DIVINE VICTORY: THE ORIGINS OF THE RELIGION OF THE LOST CAUSE, 1860-1870A thesis submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for degree MASTER OF ARTSinHISTORYbyANDREW P. DAVISAPRIL 2012atTHE GRADUATE SCHOOL OF THE COLLEGE OF CHARLESTON THE CITADEL GRADUATE COLLEGEApproved by:Dr. W. Scott Poole, Thesis DirectorDr. Tammy IngramDr. Amanda MushalDr. Amy T. McCandlesss, Dean of the Graduate School￼￼￼￼The religion of the Lost Cause did not slowly develop during the late 1860s and 1870s, only to provide a foundation for grieving southerners in the two decades that followed. Instead, its foundational ideas took shape as men marched off to battle and the idea of an independent Confederate nation remained very much within reach. The civil religion of this nascent nation then proved extremely malleable as proponents of the Lost Cause quickly altered its form and function to meet their own needs. The religious ideology of the Lost Cause allowed ex-Confederates to turn their temporal defeat into a stunning and total divine victory. Just as a phoenix rises from the ashes to begin life anew, so too would the Confederacy overcome its earthly demise and find rebirth in other realms.