Literature / Lee Of The Union

Lee of the Union is an alternate history timeline by Uncle Mike posted here (N.B.: the forum is now closed). The premise is that Robert E. Lee decides to go with the Union instead of siding with the Confederacy like his home state. The result is a different The American Civil War that ends by 1862. America from then on solves the issues of women's rights and racism earlier than in the real world. Much like as in the real world, America fought two world wars and a cold war. This timeline ends with the election of Hillary Clinton to the presidency.

Naturally, this timeline is notable for the controversy it's incurred. Both its original home of Othertimelines and its new home of Different Worlds have a cottage industry of people picking at various implausibilities within it. The lack of dramatic sociopolitical or geopolitical changes is another major flaw. This timeline has thus developed a rather large hatedom who even takes the time to get into lengthy debates with the timeline's author. One even wrote a trollfic where somebody implied to be the timeline's author travels back in time, returns to the 1940s to a totalitarian America and gets incarcerated for looking Slavic. The short story ends with the nuclear destruction of Newark, New Jersey.

Tropes present in LOTU

  • Alternate History: Thank God.
  • Alternate History Wank: Not of an actual country, but a particular ideology.
  • Author Appeal: The absolute tweeness of this timeline. A president dies on 11/22/1963 and there's some disaster on 9/11/2001. This is all despite a divergence point in 1861.
    • Mary Suetopia: The United States in Lee of the Union. The political mainstream is in the author's populist, vaguely New Deal liberalism. The cultural environment retains more elements from the 1970s. Star Trek is more popular.
    • Rose Tinted Narrative: America can do no wrong. The issues of ethnic prejudice, sexism and other forms of oppression are just shuffled under the table.
  • Author On Board: See the above entries for why. Actually, just read all these entires.
  • Author Tract: Just read it to see why.
  • Eagleland: The first portrayal of it is how this America is seen. A benevolent liberal hegemon.
  • Hollywood History: This is basically the entire timeline of Lee of the Union. The gritty realities of 19th/20th century American history, geopolitics and socioeconomic contexts are shut down in favor of a narrative that favors moderate hero democrat rule.
  • In Spite of a Nail: Lee gets elected president in the 1864 election, only to end up assassinated in the same way that Lincoln was in real life.
    • Politically Correct History: Women get suffrage in 1872; Indians and blacks get suffrage in the late 19th century without any major problems. Nathan Bedford Forrest shuts down the Ku Klux Klan early and works to keep it down. Must I go on?
    • Popular History: 1960s and 1970s cultural icons do well.
  • Strawman Political: The author's opinion and portrayal of conservatives, among other things. Nearly any Republican elected President in this timeline (unless his name is Roosevelt) is set up for a huge fall. He even has Joe McCarthy as President and turns Reagan into a strawman version of himself! He even admits his desire to "punish" Florida for what he perceives as its role in electing George W. Bush.
    • Basically, Republicans can do no right and Democrats no wrong. If the author likes you, you've got it made in this TL. If he doesn't...
  • What If?: This is bad. but it's still an alternate history.