Live Interview with Robert Hicks, author of A Separate Country and Widow of the South
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CWL spends 20 minutes with Thomas Hicks during an hour long interview on Hanchette Book Talk Radio.
Faulkner states that "The past is not dead; it is not even passed."
Jill Lepore states "Historians and novelists are kin . . .but they're more like brothers who throw food at each other than like sisters who borrow each other's clothes,"
Hicks states that historians have for a long time promoted a lie regarding John Bell Hoods' military decisions and the possibility of an addiction to laudanum. CWL asks if historians have been dismissive of his portrait of an unaddicted Hood. As a point of reference, Russell Bonds' recent work on the Battles of Atlanta War Like a Thunderbolt is close to Hicks' depiction of a general like Lee but without the popular stature.
Hicks recounts the efforts of Civil War veterans to establish a national military park at Franklin which was perceived as having the same impact as Gettysburg. The mayor of Franklin at the turn of the century dissuaded the U.S. War Department in considering Franklin as a site. Indeed, the one battle monument on the site of Franklin was torn down in 1901 because it was part of the Old South and was backward looking.
Hicks is reading Russell Bonds' War Like a Thunderbolt and is deeply appreciative of the work. He cites Shelby Foote's remark that history is story "not counting generals sitting on the tip of needle." Bonds history is driven by the story and has all the atributes of scholarly work.