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Contributors to this collection, edited by Claire Potter and Renee Romano, consider the wide range of challenges the practice of contemporary history poses. These essays address sources like television and video games, the ethics of writing about living subjects, questions of privacy and copyright law, and the possibilities that new technologies offer for writing history. Doing Recent History offers guidance and insight to any researcher considering tackling the not-so-distant past. Buy the Book
- Academic Cog
- Bully Bloggers
- Center of Gravitas (GayProf)
- Chapati Mystery
- Confessions of a Community College Dean
- Constitutionally Speaking
- Crooked Timber
- Dame Eleanor Hull
- Chapati Mystery
- Easily Distracted
- The Edge of the American West
- Ferule & Fescue
- Grow & Resist
- Joe. My. God.
- Lawyers, Guns and Money
- Legal History Blog
- Madwoman With a Laptop
- New Deal 2.0
- New Kid on the Hallway
- Nursing Clio
- Pat Griffin's LGBT Sport Blog
- Reassigned Time 2.0
- Religion in American History
- University Diaries
- We Are Respectable Negroes
- American Historical Association Blog
- Chronicle of Higher Education
- Inside Higher Ed
- Juan Cole's Informed Comment
- Ms. Magazine
- National Public Radio
- New York Times
- States of Devotion
- Ta-Nehisi Coates/ The Atlantic
- The Book (The New Republic)
- The Book Bench
- The Daily Kos
- The Nation
The Chronicle Blog Network, a digital salon sponsored by The Chronicle of Higher Education, features leading bloggers from all corners of academe. Content is not edited, solicited, or necessarily endorsed by The Chronicle. More on the Network...
Claire Potter's is the first book to look at the structural, legal, and cultural aspects of J. Edgar Hoover's war on crime in the 1930s, a New Deal campaign which forged new links between citizenship, federal policing, and the ideal of centralized government.
War on Crime reminds us of how and why our worship of violent celebrity hero G-men and gangsters came about and how we now are reaping the results.Buy the Book
Category Archives: history
September 10, 2012, 10:35 pm
Tomorrow will be the first time I have been in New York on September 11 since before the attack on the Twin Towers in 2001. Furthermore, I now live in a building that not only looks out over Lower Manhattan, but has a clear view of where the World Trade Center used to be and the Freedom Tower has arisen. This morning I woke up to a blue, cloudless sky and was overwhelmed with…dread.
Although I knew that life would change that day as the two tallest buildings in New York burned, twisted, and dissolved, I never could have predicted that this country would be at war for more than a decade. This was just as inconceivable as the idea that dedicated terrorists would learn to drive jetliners so that they could steer them into buildings full of…
September 2, 2012, 2:51 pm
Perhaps because editors thought it would be appropriate to print a full obituary on Labor Day weekend, I only became aware today that historian, laborer, novelist and activist Alexander Saxton passed over on August 20. He was 93, and “died by a self-inflicted gunshot wound” because, as daughter Catherine Steele wrote, Saxton believed that “the terms of his life were his to decide.”
Read Paul Vitello’s story about Saxton here.
Like fellow historian David Montgomery, Saxton became a scholar when McCarthyism ended his career as a novelist and a labor organizer. He was one of the first historians to think seriously about how racial whiteness coalesced as an identity for European-descended working-class men in California; and how the demonization of immigrants from the Asian diaspora by nativist elites served the politics of capitalism in the Western United States.
I read Saxton’s
July 4, 2012, 9:58 am
What a marvelous notion it was, in 1776, that one did not have to rely on God, King or a news anchor to know in one’s heart that the existing political system was wrong. That said, for a reading of the Declaration of Independence by some of my favorite reporters and news anchors, go here. (Hat tip to MOTheR: longtime readers of this blog will recognize that I am referring to Mother of the Radical.)
The Republican Party Platform Committee might want to pause over the section read by Nina Totenberg. In enumerating the colonists’ grievances against George III, the Founders (otherwise known as the earliest Band of Bloggers) note that:
He has endeavored to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new appropriations of lands.
June 17, 2012, 12:39 pm
Forty years ago today five men were sitting in a District of Columbia jail. They were accused of having broken into Democratic National Committee headquarters, a suite of rented rooms in the Watergate office complex which turned out to contain little of value for the Committee to Re-Elect the President (known, incredibly, as CREEP.) But the botched burglary, and most importantly the administration’s determination to cover it up, made history. In 1974, Richard Milhouse Nixon became the first American president to resign from office.
Coordinated by former national security operatives G. Gordon Liddy and Howard E. Hunt, the event was ultimately revealed as one of many illegal operations coming out of the White House. These…
June 8, 2012, 2:53 pm
….Is more African American history, of course. In the wake of Naomi Schaefer Riley’s ignorant and widely criticized blog post mocking young female scholars just beginning their work in this rich field, so many responses come to mind.
Riley, who seemed to have been genuinely surprised at how poorly the idea of closing African American Studies department was received, responds to her critics here and here. In both pieces she seems to be arguing that having a political viewpoint about a field entitles you to criticize anything and everything about it, as if you had actually read the scholarship. She also suggests that, as a journalist who is not an academic, she should not be held to standards of accuracy when she…
April 26, 2012, 2:42 pm
Christina Haag, Come to the Edge: A Memoir (New York: Spiegel & Grau, 2011).
Mimi Alford, Once Upon a Secret: My Affair With President John F. Kennedy and its Aftermath (New York: Random House, 2012).
It will be no surprise to even the uneducated reader that the Kennedy family occupies an entire cultural market niche all by itself. The Library of Congress lists over 400 John F. Kennedy items in its holdings. You can add to this number: books by and about Bobby, Ted and the other siblings; about the generations that preceded the three political brothers; about Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis and her children (there are over 300 LOC items about John Jr. and 93 by and about the far more productive and well-educated…
April 20, 2012, 12:19 am
I was sitting in the lobby of the Milwaukee Hilton and a civilian came up to me. “Hey,” he said: “Have I seen you on the History Channel?”
“Uh, probably,” I said. There are three different documentaries about crime in the 1930s that feature me as a talking head. From time to time, someone makes the connection: the working class family who lives across the street, a small child on the subway, and my all-time favorite, the men at the men’s shelter on Third Street in lower Manhattan. Because of this, I think the History Channel is one of the most popular enterprises ever created: not only do people love history, but I suspect that institutions – prisons, shelters, halfway houses – leave it on all the time because it is completely non-controversial.
“But you know …
March 19, 2012, 7:29 pm
Today my editor wrote to say that he was actually holding our new book in his hand! It was the hardback edition, which I think is worth your eyeteeth to own if you are not on a library acquisitions budget. Soon, however, the University of Georgia Press will be rolling out and shipping copies of Doing Recent History: On Privacy, Copyright, Video Games, Institutional Review Boards, Activist Scholarship, and History That Talks Back for the mean, lean paperback price of $22.95. Reserve yours by clicking the link above; by going to Powell’s (where you can see the whole table of contents and register to win free books by commenting on ours); or Amazon (where you save no money, get no table of contents, but may qualify for free shipping.)
Better yet, why don’t you mosey into your local independent and/or university bookstore and say, “YO! Where’s that book edited by Potter and Romano…
January 6, 2012, 10:42 am
Although I am not in Chicago, the spirit of the Radical nonetheless walks the halls of the Marriott.
This just in from Ian Lekus, the outgoing chair of the Committee on Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender History (CLGBTH): queer activities at the AHA abound. I realized that there may be many people who did not receive this alert, since despite all my exhortations, you are still not members. The lifetime membership is still a smoking’ hot deal at $200 (the equivalent of ten years of regular membership without the price of stamps and envelopes), while memberships for students, unemployed, and retired historians can be purchased for 5$, slightly more than that latte you just bought at Starbucks. (more…)
December 19, 2011, 1:05 pm
Have you followed American Historical Association president Anthony Grafton’s serial meditation on how graduate schools might respond to a bad academic job market? A market that has, since the the 1970s, been either stagnant or getting worse? A market with whose effects the blogosphere is obsessed?
If you haven’t, you need to catch up. For “No More Plan B” (October 2011) and “Plan C” (November 2011), both co-written with Jim Grossman for the AHA newsletter Perspectives, go here and here. For an article about “Plan B” by Scott Jaschik of Inside Higher Ed (October 3 2011) go here; and for a response by graduate student Dan Alloso (UMass-Amherst) go here. (more…)