The fight over Reconstruction historiography traditionally begins with the Dunning School of the early twentieth century. That school of thought, out of Columbia University, argued that Reconstruction was a national tragedy and proved that African Americans were not fit to be American citizens. Often, the first stand against the Dunning School is seen in W.E.B. DuBois’ Black Reconstruction (1935). When it was released, the book was recognized for offering a stinging challenge to the then-prevailing thought on Reconstruction. However, we should also look to earlier works by African American scholars that also challenged ideas of Reconstruction. This is where the former politician John Roy Lynch comes in.
One of the most famous nuns in recent history, both in the United States and world, passed away this past Sunday. Because of Mother Mary Angelica‘s creation of the Eternal Word Television Network (EWTN) and her twenty years of regular appearances on the same, her fame seems to have rivaled that of Mother Teresa of Calcutta.
Both lived long lives—Mother Teresa dying at 87 (1910-1997) and Mother Angelica at 92 (1923-2016)—and both inspired people around the world in different ways. Mother Teresa’s fame derived from her personal war on poverty in slums of India, but Mother Angelica’s notoriety derived from her televised defense of traditionalist Catholicism, beamed into living rooms during the Western world’s culture wars. Continue reading
The most recent post by Ben Alpers about September 11, 2001 and the shadow it casts over recent history has prompted me to think about the recent history of the American South, a region near and dear to my heart. More specifically, it has me thinking about the role of magazines in attempting to craft a different perception of the American South, compared to what most Americans are used to thinking about. Magazines as sources of intellectual debate and ferment are, of course, a tradition of the field. One could not imagine saying much about the history of the United States after 1960 from an intellectual perspective without citing, for example, The New York Review of Books or Commentary. Indeed, one of the plenary sessions at this year’s S-USIH conference covers the history of “little magazines.” Likewise, it will be difficult to write or talk about the intellectual history of the American South since the 1980s without mentioning magazines such as Oxford American, or for that matter, several other periodicals I like to think of as “little magazines of the South.”
In a prior post, in comments to prior posts, and in other writings on George Nash’s Conservative Intellectual Movement in America: Since 1945, it has been noted that he is a conservative and that his political leanings have affected his book in some way. But we have not yet come to any consensus about whether Nash’s politics influenced CIMA in a positive or negative fashion. We also haven’t talked about specific examples from the book.
I’m not suggesting that we must come to any consensus about the direction of Nash’s bias, of his subjectivity. But I’d at least like explore wherein and how the book reveals his politics, or how his politics may have influenced his argument, use of evidence, word choice, analysis, and narrative style.
Some caveats: What follows is by no means exhaustive. I also will not present observations in the order that they appear in the text. Finally, I will offer page numbers when possible (from the 1996 ISI edition).
Here goes: Continue reading