The Soul of America Revisited

The American author Jon Meacham published recently a book entitled   “The Soul of America”, which revisits a theme which is not new –the great divide of the American society coming from unhealed wounds of the Civil War, fought in the United States from 1861 to 1865 due to dispute over slavery.

Jon Meacham is not an impartial essayist, known as a liberal intellectual whose views expressed in   “The Soul of America,” will not be popular among a more conservative segment of the public, which does not mean that the content of the book is as engaging as troubling.

The most important aspect of the argument is that the civil war dichotomy stays unresolved between when is commonly known as the soul and the spirit of the North and South.

The most recent difference of opinion came over  conflict over the removal of statues southern of civil war heroes, which culminated in riots and disturbance in various cities, namely in the port city of Charleston in  South Carolina.

The North or the Union personalised by Abraham Lincoln and the South by the General Robert Lee the leader of the Confederate Southern States army.

Ii is difficult to take sides in this dramatic event that took placed more than one hundred and fifty years ago.

What looks certain is that a growing part of the American population has very few or any links with that complex divide of the past being mainly descendants  immigrants from the various parts of the world that came to America well after that divisive and  harrowing war between the North and the South . 

The divide subsists nowadays between a conservative society, characterised by the Midwest and Southern States and a liberal culture personified by the New England and West Coast regions, reflected in the nature of the Republican and Democratic parties, polarised by a fierce debate on immigration, health care and nature conservation issues.

The disagreement has been defined by pro and anti Trump factions which is a reflection of the of the deep divide between the two distintive ethos that one segment of the society wants to impose to the other.. �

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