history history relevance pragmatic historian purpose of history

How Do We Deal with Historical Trauma?

Carried through the centuries Secrets locked up Are loaded on my back And it weighs me down Stanza from Exo-Politics from the album Black Holes and Revelations by Muse, lyrics by Matt Bellamy My husband gave me a couple of Muse CDs for Christmas, which I have been listening to obsessively since I received them. One of my favorite songs from the album Black Holes and Revelations is Exo-Politics for its gritty, rooty sound. The…

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history history relevance pragmatic historian purpose of history time using history

The Importance of the Year – or Decade – in Review

I am writing this post on New Year’s Day 2020. My Twitter feed is afire with people sharing their reviews of the past year or decade. The decade review is especially popular because we just flipped to 2020, which many feel is the beginning of a new decade while others argue that it is the last year of the decade and the new decade won’t actually start until 2021. Yet others point out that time…

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history history relevance pragmatic historian purpose of history using history

Backwater Historians & Invisible Historians

I had another post prepared for today, but a kerflapple* arose on Twitter this weekend about an opinion piece in The Atlantic by Andrew Ferguson that I cannot leave unremarked. The title alone should help you understand why: Historians Should Stay Out of Politics. Let me take a deep breath. I’ll try not to vibrate about the mere title alone. But the opinions expressed in the article are going to make it hard to keep…

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history history relevance pragmatic historian purpose of history using history

A History-Love Letter for My Husband

At the end of October/beginning of November 2019, my husband Erik called my attention to the astonishing accomplishment of one of our high school classmates, Steve Peck. Steve, who was known as Casey as a kid, grew up the street across from me. He became an architect and one of his buildings made the news recently. Steve designed a building that is a giant guitar for the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood,…

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history history relevance pragmatic historian purpose of history using history

Sherlock Holmes in Minnesota

I was paging through the University of Minnesota Press’s current holiday book guide and ran across a couple of entries that stopped me cold. Like, I haven’t even looked through the rest of the guide, stopped cold. Two books by author Larry Millett, who has written architectural history books, caught my attention. They were “Sherlock Holmes and the Eisendorf Enigma” and “Sherlock Holmes and the Ice Palace Murders.” Whoa! Two books about Sherlock Holmes set…

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