Ulysses S. Grant Takes Job in Local Bar

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6 comments… add one
  • Brooks Simpson May 18, 2009 @ 5:13

    Civil War memory, indeed. This is part of a truly bizarre series.

    Now, here’s the test. Watch the responses. Then imagine if someone engaged in the same project about Robert E. Lee.

    • Kevin Levin May 18, 2009 @ 6:10

      Brooks,

      I thought you might find this entertaining. No doubt, the shit would hit the fan if Lee had been the subject. That said, these videos give us the kind of grassroots perspective on Civil War memory that was simply not possible a few decades ago. As you can probably guess my interest in these videos has, for the most part, nothing to do with their accuracy, but with the way in which the war continues to be represented. With this one I am left scratching my head, but that makes it that much more interesting.

  • Bob Pollock May 18, 2009 @ 6:46

    Well, Kevin, I’m happy to know I’m not the only one scratching my head over this. The last line of the song (I think it was “I don’t recognize me”) might be a commentary on the many misperceptions of Grant in public memory.

  • Kevin Levin May 18, 2009 @ 7:56

    Speaking of Grant and Civil War memory, Joan Waugh’s long-awaited study should be out within the next year from UNC Press. I can’t wait to read it, though she has published essays in various collections and journals.

  • Greg Rowe May 18, 2009 @ 15:34

    Yes, Kevin it is a “grassroots perspective”, but what kind of “grass” are we talking here? I was not expecting the early-MTV-esq music video here. This is simply…well…I’m not sure what it is.

    Brooks, you are absolutely right. Not many would even think about doing this with Lee and it would sure cause a stink if someone did.

  • Greg Rowe May 18, 2009 @ 16:10

    Let me add that I’m not real thrilled with this portrayal of Grant, either, but there are those, for whatever reason, who believe he is a much more unlikable character that other Civil War personalities. I am inclined to believe that is more due to a questionable Presidency than questionable battlefield leadership.

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