Tag Archives: history

South Africa wants to make history compulsory at school. But can it?

South Africa wants to make history compulsory at school. But can it?

South Africa’s minister of Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga has released a report from a ministerial task team that recommends a major overhaul of the history curriculum at schools. Most of the debate around the report has focused on its main recommendation – to make history compulsory in the final three years of high school from 2023. […] … learn more→

Why we still need to teach young people about the Holocaust

Why we still need to teach young people about the Holocaust

It has been more than 70 years since the Nazi-occupied Auschwitz concentration camp was liberated. Auschwitz was the most notorious of all the concentration camps – where it is believed that more than a million people were systematically exterminated via state systems of execution and torture. Concentration camps were central to the Nazi ideology and victims were mostly Jews, Gypsies, black […] … learn more→

Confronting slavery: turning Brown’s difficult past into future opportunities

Confronting slavery: turning Brown’s difficult past into future opportunities

How should a university engage with the consequences of its own history? How can difficult and controversial pasts add to the quality and effectiveness of a university’s work in the present? Ten years ago,Slavery and Justice report; reflections and recommendations following from revelations about its early benefactors’ involvement in the Rhode Island slave trade. Today, […] … learn more→

Student explains why College graduates are so stupid

Student explains why College graduates are so stupid

After a good four plus years in college, I’ve had enough time to evaluate the whole professor-student dynamic. And after all this time, I’d have to say that I’m walking away with the most sympathy for my instructors, and not my classmates. A lot of people say that U.S. college students are really, really dumb. […] … learn more→

Why removing the Jefferson Davis statue is a big mistake

The removal of Jefferson Davis’s statue from its prominent location on the campus of the University of Texas at Austin this week may appear to end the university’s difficult struggle to shake off its historical embrace of racist values and practices. It does not. Removing the statue is a serious moral and ethical mistake. Remembering […] … learn more→

Reclaiming history for the future

A specter is haunting our time: the specter of the short term. We live in a moment of accelerating crisis that is characterized by a shortage of long-term thinking. Rising sea levels and other threats to our environment; mounting inequality; rotting infrastructure. Our culture lacks a long-term perspective. Where can we turn for deep knowledge? […] … learn more→

History, hashtags, and the truth about slavery

When we sat down last week to read The Economist’s dismaying—and subsequently retracted—review of Edward E. Baptist’s new history of American slavery, The Half Has Never Been Told: Slavery and the Making of American Capitalism, we experienced a strong sense of déjà vu. The anonymous Economist reviewer objected to Baptist’s portrayal of slavery as a […] … learn more→

What kind of History should we teach?

About two years ago I moved from Madison to Austin because I was convinced that the flagship university in Texas was building the best group of scholars and students in my field of study: international history, foreign policy, and leadership. The History Department at UT already had a distinguished group of faculty who study all […] … learn more→