Cornell University Press
In this engagingly written and thoroughly researched book, Richard M. Gamble traces the history of Julia Ward Howe’s “Battle Hymn of the Republic” from its conception at the outset of the Civil War though the beginning of the 21st century. Gamble argues that the “Battle Hymn,” with its biblically informed themes of righteous and redemptive violence should be understood not simply as an aspect of America’s civil religion, but more specifically as an expression of religious nationalism, a self-conscious identification of the United States with God’s ongoing war against sin and evil. Built upon the interconnected notions that God’s purposes can be discerned in the workings of history, that violence against the enemies of righteousness is often a moral duty, and that the United States has a special place in the fulfillment of divine providence, Gamble shows that the “Battle Hymn” has served as a path to “righteous war” for generations of Americans.
Teed, Paul E.
"A Fiery Gospel: The Battle Hymn of the Republic and the Road to Righteous War,"
Civil War Book Review: Vol. 21
Available at: https://digitalcommons.lsu.edu/cwbr/vol21/iss4/19