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Kyle Osborn
Instructor of History


My research focuses on the emotional experience of the American Civil War.  In particular, I analyze how the political culture of secession and the Civil War transformed the dominant emotional standards of Southern culture, and how individual Southerners navigated through (and helped remold) these cultural changes in the pursuit of greater emotional freedom.  I have also conducted research on politics and race relations in East Tennessee, particularly regarding the controversial journalistic and political career of William “Parson” Brownlow in the 1850s and 1860s.

  • PhD., University of Georgia, 2013
  • M.A., East Tennessee State University, 2007
  • M.A.T., East Tennessee State University, 2007
  • B.A., East Tennessee State University, 2007
Recent Publications and Presentations


“Reconstructing Race: Parson Brownlow and The Rhetoric of Race in East Tennessee,” in Reconstructing Appalachia: The Civil War’s Aftermath, Andrew Slap, ed.

“Their Norths: Antebellum Southern Travelers and Sectional Identity.” Southern Cultures, 21, no. 4 (Winter 2015).

“An Emotional Rebellion: Elite Southern Women and the Liberation of Rage,” forthcoming.


“The Sectional Crisis in Georgia,” in The Civil War in Georgia: A New Georgia Encyclopedia Companion, edited by John Inscoe (Athens: University of Georgia Press, 2011).


“Parson Brownlow and the Rhetoric of Race, 1850-1860,” presented at the Ohio Valley History Conference, 2006.

“Parson Brownlow and the Politics of Racial Reconstruction,” presented at the Appalachian Studies Conference, 2011.

“Stuff That’s Not True About the Civil War,” presented at the King University Honors Seminar, 2016.

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