Following his attack on women's history and the Berkshire Conference, the blogger at Mercurius Rusticus a) composed a clever/snarky reply to his critics,"A Letter from Mercurius Civicus to Mercurius Cantabrigiensis" (scroll down to 6:12 AM EDT), and b) closed his blog to all but invited readers. We routinely delete all history blogs that are not open to the public from Cliopatria's History Blogroll, so Mercurius Rusticus no longer appears among our Pre-Modern History Blogs. When MR changes his policy, we'll be happy to return his blog to the list.
This was a missed opportunity, because underlying MR's bitterness and snark were some issues that ought be discussed: 1) in what ways, if any, has the growth of women's history broadened and deepened our understanding of history? 2) has its growth drained resources from other fields of historical inquiry and negatively affected the careers of male historians? and 3) person for person, have female historians been as productive as their male counterparts? (I have heard the late Elizabeth Fox-Genovese make the argument that they have not.) In the meantime, Sharon Howard's"Women's history/gender history: what and why?" Early Modern Notes, 18 June, is required reading for Mercurius Rusticus.
Early American National:
Scott W. Berg's Grand Avenues: The Story of the French Visionary Who Designed Washington, D.C. is reviewed in Kolby Yarnell,"L'Enfant and the Pride of the Potomac," NY Sun, 14 February 2007; Benjamin Forgey,"The French Heart Of Washington," Washington Post, 1 April; and Kenneth Ringle,"Washington: City and Symbol – or Neither?" European Affairs, Winter/Spring.
Modern Middle Eastern:
Gareth Porter,"US/Iran: Fearing Escalation, Pentagon Fought Cheney Plan," IPS, 6 June, reports that the Pentagon resisted plans for a limited assault on Iranian nuclear facilities. For the last seven months of the Bush administration, however, key figures in the Pentagon's opposition have moved elsewhere. Hat tip to Eric Altermann.
Karl Meyer,"Another bad deal for Baghdad," IHT, 17 June, compares the administration's proposals for long-term occupation of Iraq with Great Britain's failed treaty of 1930 with Iraq. Hat tip to Andrew Sullivan.