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Influential Factors of Southern Secession and Civil War

The secession of Southern American states, which led to the American Civil War, was not a sudden event but rather an extension of decades of tensions and conflicts. Partisan, communal, and Economic discrepancies amid southern and Northern portions served as the foundation of the secession movement, which was a result of complicated circumstances that ended in a catastrophic war. The main reasons for secession from the South lay in financial injustices, communal and ethnic facets, slavery, as well as partisan-related factors acting as a cause that led to the cruelest period in the American account.

Economic imbalance between the North and the South was a driving factor in the Southern secession. In the time preceding the Civil War, the Southern economy was largely agricultural, based on rural farming executed by the slave workforce. The case went opposite to the North’s fast globalization and urbanism that fueled its effective financial system. The Southern civilians who capitalized on the agricultural structure suffered the most exclusion and, therefore, began to resent the North’s progress and rural advancement (Er 34). The industrial economic advancement of Northern America surpassed and strengthened the conventional mode of the Southern part.

Besides, the protective tariffs matter added to the succession problems. Southern states contended that the safety customs intended to defend the northern corporations significantly threatened and damaged the agricultural monetary of the South as the regions fought for land. Therefore, the Southern elites considered the development as partiality to Northern factories for the detriment of Southern planters (Er 36). Persistent economic and land differences fed resistance and widened the gap between the South and the North, which built up much hatred that ultimately resulted in the beginning of the Civil War and Southern states’ secession.

At the heart of the secession revolution lay the slavery aspect, which dominated the Southern economy and meant the prominence of slavery everywhere in the society of the South. Unfortunately, Southern states felt that the increasing abolitionist views in the North prompted a precise danger to their distinctive system and mode of living. Beyond that, the issue of the states’ privileges became a prime concern (Er 35). The southern states advocated for the freedom to decide on the bondage validity within their limits, recommending the doctrines of voiding against what they termed federal intrusion.

The political separations that marked pre-Civil War America were essentially due to the thorny slavery concern. The selection of a prominent and strong foe of the extension of slavery, Abraham Lincoln, led to aggravating tensions. The southern states felt that Abraham’s win was an explicit risk to their slavery workforce system and way of living (Er 34). The scenario meant that he was of the opinion that their constitutional rights had been infringed. Eventually, the incident produced anxiety about federal meddling in their errands, and consequently, South Carolina became the first among the Southern republics to separate from the Union.

The breakup of the Southern states and the creation of the Confederate States of the US marked a point of no return from the Federal Republic inherited from the Founding Fathers. Southern managers rationalized their activities as needed to safeguard their independence and perpetuate the system of slavery. The choice of Abraham precipitated secession, revealing the incompatibility of the North and the South with regard to the slavery question (Gaughan et al. 115). Hence, the political cleavage laid the groundwork for the Civil War.

Community and cultural aspects were the biggest contributors to the Southern secession movement. In contrast to the developing urban scene of the North, the pyramidal and agricultural revolution of the South remained the polar opposite (Era 35). The Southern civilians maintained the opinion of nobility and authority as idealized in their minds, standing contrary to the intrusion of the Northern development market economy (Ryan 16). Such an established perception of the racial dominancy of the South and its mode of living triggered the feeling of rebellion against the federal government among the Southern republics.

On the other hand, the cultural separation intensified when the Northern liberator saw slavery as an immorality. The Northern moral position contrasted with the established economic values and communal principles of the South based on the societal and cultural perceptions of the slave workforce, aggravating animosities and activating the country around dogmatic divides (Ryan 16). The South’s devotion to protecting slavery as the bedrock of its economic and communal system precisely activated the North’s increasingly abolitionist mood, deepening the ethnic and social divide that would eventually precipitate civil war advent and Southern secession, respectively.

The section of the United States comprising the former Southern States that resulted in the American Civil War was a blend of complex ethnic, fiscal, and communal pressures that have grown over the years. The combination of slaveholding, issues relating to state sovereignty, and socioeconomic differences excited secessionist indignation and thus gave life to the movement. Attempts negotiation notwithstanding, the incompatible uncertainties between North and South culminated in a bloody war that would alter the US account forever. The effects of the Civil War and its aftermath linger until today, with scars of an unhealed past haunting our present.


Er, Eunice. “The Civil War Resulted in a Culmination of Economic Conflicts Between the North and South.” HiPo: The Langara Student Journal of History and Political Science 4 (2021): 34-40. https://lc.arcabc.ca/islandora/object/lc%3A4764/datastream/PDF/view

Gaughan, Anthony J. “The Dynamics of Democratic Breakdown: A Case Study of the American Civil War.” British Journal of American Legal Studies 11, no. 1 2022: 113–151. https://doi.org/10.2478/bjals-2022-0002

Ryan, Erin. “Secession and Federalism in the United States: Tools for Managing Regional Conflict in a Pluralist Society.” Claims for Secession and Federalism: A Comparative Study with a Special Focus on Spain 2019: 1–46. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-59707-2_2

Writer: Adrienne DeRosa
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