Killer Angels Essay, Research Paper
Essay submitted by Anonymous
The novel The Killer Angles, by Michael Shaara, gives a story like depiction of the
American Civil War at the Battle of Gettysburg. In this novel we see the views of both
Confederate and Union armies. The officers for both sides in this novel used to go to
war with each other but are now on different sides according to their political views. In
the end both armies realized the war had accomplished nothing but all the deaths of
soldiers. During the novel, the armies are going to war against their opponents and not
necessarily their enemies.
Despite the fact that the Confederate and Union armies were entirely concerned with
defeating their opponent, many times they were fighting against relatives and friends.
For instance, General Armistead says, “…will you tell General Hancock how very sorry I
am”(P.350). General Hancock is a Confederate Major General while Armistead is a Union
Commander. These two men were at one time friends. Again during the war, officers
make a realization about the war. Longstreet realizes that Armistead and Garnett are
dead and that Kemper was dying (P.358). Then he sees the true facts that this war
had accomplished nothing but the deaths of great men.
Shaara’s theory was that the war accomplished nothing but deaths. This theory has
been considered before by many men, most likely the men of the war. George Pickett
knows the war is not just about slavery (P. 71). In the Battle of Gettysburg thousands
of men died for almost nothing. Of course the main cause of the war was slavery, but
other circumstances contributed to the cause of the civil war, such as the election of
This book contributes a detailed description and story of the Battle of Gettysburg.
Many books about Gettysburg give a biography about the battle and the commanders,
but this book makes the commanders and soldiers come to life. It shows actual feelings
about the war. While most books give a narrative monologue of the battle. This book
brings characters to life and gives a detailed description of the battle.
This novel has raised questions in my mind because I was unaware of the real battle;
but it raises no new questions to society such as Hofstadter’s writings. This novel gives
a very accurate description of the Battle of Gettysburg. This novel also shows the
importance of each battle and each division in each of these battles. Moreover this
novel shows the importance of strategic positioning. If the union army was not holding
that advantageous position, it would have been very difficult to win the battle.
The Killer Angels, is a very remarkable novel that I enjoyed reading very much. This
novel is worthwhile when reading about the Battle of Gettysburg during class. This book
makes the battle come to life, which the class books can not do.