Louisiana State University Press
Matthew Christopher Hulbert and John C. Inscoe’s edited volume, Writing History with Lightning: Cinematic Representations of Nineteenth-Century America, aptly gets its title from Wilson’s notorious response upon viewing Birth of a Nation. Wilson’s apocryphal statement, alluding to the undeniable lure of history played out on the big screen, arguably still holds true to this day. But as Hulbert notes in his introduction, Wilson purportedly added, “My only regret is that it is all so terribly true,” a claim not only fraught with historical error, but with devastating implications for Jim Crow America. As these twenty-six contributors deftly illustrate, cinematic power has rarely featured historical precision. Their errors, however, can be deeply instructive.
Brokaw, David J.
"Writing History with Lightning: Cinematic Representations of Nineteenth-Century America,"
Civil War Book Review: Vol. 21
Available at: https://digitalcommons.lsu.edu/cwbr/vol21/iss2/13