The Week in Early American History

TWEAHAre you looking for a break from a busy weekend of watching the NFL playoffs? Or maybe you need some light relief while finishing up your syllabi for the new semester? Never fear, The Week in Early American History is here!

(All I’ll say is that it’s not because I’m British that I’m angry at the Patriots this weekend.)

On with the links!

It seemed a busy week for history and popular media news. Roger Ailes went on record as saying he’d like to launch a history channel with the help of Bill O’Reilly (and, naturally, the cash of Rupert Murdoch). Meanwhile, in more “real history,” London’s Evening Standard offers this article on Dido Belle, whose story is to reach movie theaters this spring.

NPR‘s Code Switch blog ran a fascinating article on Emily Johnson Dickinson, the last monolingual speaker of the Chickasaw language, who died last week.

A fantastic video from Ben Schmidt visualizes the development of American whaling in the 19th century.

The Atlantic ran a thought-provoking interview with Eric Foner on the question of teaching history. Also on the subject of teaching, Tona Hangen wrote about an AHA panel on teaching digital history to undergraduates, and particularly addressing why history students need to use technology.

In exciting archaeological news, promising discoveries were made at a dig in Maryland. In more concerning museum-related news, the Mariners’ Museum announced this week it was closing the laboratory displaying the Civil War USS Monitor due to a lack of federal funding.

MOOCs have been a controversial subject in academic circles, and you don’t need to range far into the academic blogosphere to find lengthy critiques of the model. Coursera are offering some courses on early American history in the next month or so, including Peter Onuf teaching on The Age of Jefferson and Akhil Amar on the Constitution.

The David Library of the American Revolution issued a call for applications for its short-term residential fellowships, with a deadline of March 1. As a former recipient of a DLAR fellowship, I can highly recommend the experience!

C19 published the program for their forthcoming biennial conference.

Two recent C-Span programs may be of interest: US Capitol Art of the American Revolution, and The Civil War: Coping With Death.

The Weekly Standard ran a feature on the life and disappearance of Ambrose Bierce. And the American Conservative ran this review of a recent biography of Adam Smith.

Looking for moral improvement this week? How about some 1850 advice for young men? And for a musical outro, how about some music from Benjamin Franklin’s armonica? Have a good week, everyone!

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