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Historians in the News

This page features brief excerpts of stories published by the mainstream media and, less frequently, blogs, alternative media, and even obviously biased sources. The excerpts are taken directly from the websites cited in each source note. Quotation marks are not used.




  • Why Can't the Democrats Build a Governing Majority? (Review of Timothy Shenk)

    by Kim Phillips-Fein

    In an implicit response to Richard Hofstadter's finding of the continuity of a narrow "American Political Tradition," Timothy Shenk examines the ways that activists have occasionally disrupted the political order and convinced people to "take a leap into an unknown future."



  • Victimhood and Vengeance: The Reactionary Roots of Christian Nationalism

    by Linda Greenhouse

    Three books offer illuminating and distressing insight on the eruption of Christian nationalism, a "deep story" in American cultural history that, when its adherents feel denied the power they expect, guides potentially violent vengeance. 



  • Kidada Williams on The Reconstruction that Wasn't

    In the new "I Saw Death Coming," Williams describes a "shadow Confederacy" that refused to cede freedom or dignity to African Americans who often lived far from the reach of a federal government that was unreliably committed to their protection. 



  • How the Russian Jews Became Soviet

    The novelist Gary Shteyngart, who emigrated from the USSR to the US as a child, reviews Sasha Senderovich's "How the Soviet Jew was Made," a work that gives short shrift to neither the "Soviet" nor "Jewish" sides of the question. 



  • Legal Historian Reva Siegel on Dobbs

    Legal historians have argued that the equal protection provisions of the 14th Amendment offer a more solid rationale for reproductive rights than the now-defunct right to privacy, though the court's majority has expressed skepticism while not directly ruling on the question. 



  • Edward Larson Speaks to the New History Wars

    by Jon Meacham

    "To me, Larson’s unemotional account of the Republic’s beginnings confirms a tragic truth: that influential white Americans knew — and understood — that slavery was wrong and liberty was precious, but chose not to act according to that knowledge and that understanding."



  • Marvin Dunn: Florida Prof Defies New Laws to "Teach the Truth"

    The Professor Emeritus at Florida International University says that he can't teach about the history of racist terrorism in the state without registering disgust for the actions of lynch mobs or offering clarity about the political purposes of the violence. 



  • Three Novels Rooted in Forgotten Black Histories

    Novels by Kai Thomas, Jamila Minnicks, and Nyani Nkrumah tell stories of Black life at the Canadian end of the Underground Railroad, an all-Black town in 1950s Alabama, and in post-Civil Rights Mississippi. 



  • Parthenon Marbles' Fate Subject to Secret Talks

    The British Museum and Greek government officials have acknowledged secret talks over the last two years about the repatriation of marbles taken by Lord Elgin from the Parthenon in the early 1800s. The resolution is not yet known. 



  • Anastasia Curwood on New Shirley Chisholm Bio

    By framing Chisholm as a person with a life history, Curwood elevates knowledge of the New York congresswoman from a "first major party candidate" to a political theorist and visionary.