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Why Rights Revolutions Come in Waves

As “woke” implies sleep, even a culture war craves peace

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“Reconstruction” (1865–1877), as high school students encounter it, is the period of a dozen years following the American Civil War. Emancipation and abolition were carried through; attempts were made to redress the inequities of slavery; and problems were resolved involving the re-admission to the Union of the eleven states that had seceded. The latter measures were more successful than the former, but the process had a beginning and an end. After the back-room deals that followed the disputed election of 1876, the political system settled in a new equilibrium. I’ve become intrigued by the possibility that one reconstruction wasn’t enough.  Perhaps