Something I wrote for an online Chinese History class:
There’s a kind of reversal exercise that is getting more common: it’s worth thinking about. What would American history and society look like if it were written the way that we write histories of other cultures? What would the history of the Civil War look like if we talked about it in terms of tribalism, religious sects, honor culture, caste systems, and magical thinking? What would an analysis of US history that took Puritanism or Methodism as critically as Chinese histories take Confucianism and Daoism? Remember: Harvard and Yale were seminaries until the 19th century; we still haven’t had a non-Christian president, and we added “In God We Trust” to the currency and “Under God” to the pledge in the mid-20th century. What if, instead of focusing on ‘pioneers’ and activists and breakthroughs towards a more perfect union, we focused on conservative and subversive forces and how each crisis revealed deep-rooted problems and how we failed to actually solve them most of the time?
A brief piece on the political backlashes against coffee in Early Modern history
What do notes passed in class look like in ancient Babylonia? A few bits of juvenalia have been deciphered
Reminder: For extra credit, you need to attend the event, and write a short (1-2 page) summary and reaction to it. All extra credits must be handed in by Friday, May 4th. You might want to look through the list of extra credit opportunities and see if you did something credit-worthy without realizing it.
May 3 @ 4:00 pm Room 409 Russ Hall
Reception to follow at 5:00 pm in Porter Hall
The Kligmans will deliver a public lecture May 3 at 4:00 pm in room 409 Russ Hall followed by a reception in Porter Hall at 5:00 pm. In 2009, Misha earned a MFA in Painting and Drawing from the University of Kansas at Lawrence, KS. In 2001, Amy earned a BFA from the Ringling College of Art and Design of Sarasota, FL. The Kligmans were the recipients of the Juror’s Selection first-place exhibition award for their entries in Visual Territory, the PSU Art Department’s biannual national juried exhibition. The exhibition gathered artists from around the U.S. to investigate “the intimate territories of personal experience and the global landscape of place and the environment”.
About his recent body of work, Misha writes that his work reflects his “continuous struggle to understand the insistent nature of nostalgic longing tinted by the history of exile and the knowledge of genocide.” History is a major influence for Misha and his work aims to clarify and reflect his beliefs. Amy writes, “While creating this body of work, I have been thinking of a kind of place… I don’t think of this place as a location on a map, but more a place in one’s head where life reveals itself… Its a place where you start to put things together, where things seem clear, though not always logical.” Her focus on this “thinking place” is evident in her colorful and engaging work.
A review of the history of May 1st, aka May Day as a labor holiday, commemorating the 8-hour workday and the violence which met the labor movement.
The history of debt goes back a long, long way, but here is a nice short survey of the shifting commercial finance markets in the US in the 20th century by Louis Hyman, author of a book on the topic.
Remember, before oil meant “petroleum from the ground”, it meant “whale.”
A nice discussion of William Shirer’s Rise and Fall of the Third Reich on the 50th anniversary of its publication. Shirer was the first to write a full-bore survey of the Nazi regime’s origins, policies and military collapse, and it was a very widely read book back in the 60s, despite being a massive tome.