Browsing All Posts filed under »History«

Marking the Anniversary of Our Entry into the First World War

July 5, 2017

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Historians love anniversaries. It not only celebrates or commemorates the past, but gives us an excuse to write and talk about the past. Since the past is our specialty, bring on the anniversaries! Five hundred years ago, this year, the Augustinian friar, Martin Luther, posted his Ninety-Five theses on the church doors of Wittenberg in […]

Immigration, Redux

February 11, 2017

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It is time to visit immigration-land once again, especially to correct many absurd and patently wrong assumptions about this hot button issue. The first immigrants to North America were, of course, the ancestors of the American Indians who arrived maybe fifteen or twenty thousand years ago. The second wave of immigrants were your ancestors and […]

Nationalism

February 11, 2017

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Nationalism is complicated. One dictionary has seven different meanings, from “spirit or aspirations common to the whole of a nation” to “a movement, as in the arts, based upon the folk idioms, history, aspirations, etc. of a nation.” Sometimes patriotism and chauvinism are associated with nationalism. Perhaps the best definition is #5: “the policy or […]

Why Do I Need to Take History?

February 11, 2017

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Well, if you know me a bit, you’ll think the old history prof is sounding off. “You gotta take history or you’ll be an ignoramus, or worse.” Maybe a politician I’m thinking, but not saying it. But I want to take up a larger issue, although I admit a partiality to history. It has been […]

Old Fashioned and Useless: Or the Great Cursive Debate

January 8, 2017

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“Old fashioned” and “useless” I thought could be me and my cohort of pre-boomers (those born before 1946) on our way into retirement homes and given to just doddering around the garden watering the petunias. Writing cursive, or “long hand” as we used to say, is, I quickly discovered from a short search on the […]

Hypocrisy, Not Just Another Word

January 8, 2017

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I am constantly astonished, even at my age, at the “holier than thou” attitudes of many Americans when it comes to something like the alleged Russian hacking and manipulation of the American elections. We stand back in a saintly state of innocence and not only cast the first stone, but also most of the rest […]

Reversing the Fall of the Empire

November 5, 2016

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Here’s a snippet of truth I’d like us all to consider. Our American nation is going south similarly to what brought down the Roman Empire in the ancient world. It is reversible, but to do so we have to exercise both wisdom and discipline. There are a lot of signposts to read. Today let’s just […]