The brackets have been compiled, the notes have been consulted. More importantly, you have had all weekend to consider the match-ups. Now all we wait for is your votes to decide who progresses to the next round.
Today, we kick off the competitive side of Junto March Madness by pitting the books from Brackets 1 and 2 against each other in the Round of 64. Tomorrow, we’ll go through the same process for Brackets 3 and 4. And then we’ll publish the results, before moving on to Round 2 at the end of the week.
Voting on brackets 1 and 2 closes at midnight EST. We ask that you only vote once for each matchup—we do, however, encourage spreading the word to friends, family, colleagues, pets and all those with a passing interest in early American history.
As with last year, we’re hoping this will provoke lively discussion. So, what do you think? Who are the unstoppable favorites in each bracket? Which books are likely to pull a Cinderella run and maybe get all the way to the coveted Final Four? Remember, our primary goal with all this is to spark discussion. So let us know, either in the comments, or on Twitter using the hashtag #JMM14.
And now for the voting:
While there’s a standard rule that there will always be a 12-over-5 upset, both #5 seeds are quite strong. Perhaps the “big” upset will be John Fea, who has bragged about doing his homework, and effort often gets rewarded.
Though not an upset, I expect Anne Hyde to go much further than a typical 7-seed.
As a former student of John Fea, I think he’ll go deep. But look to Paul Mapp and Jennifer Morgan to pull out first round upsets, with Linford Fisher causing problems come later rounds.
I personally wish for a Goetz victory. I like the book, and I think its argument needs a fuller discussion in this forum.
I am curious to see how the 8-9 match up between Snyder and Gallay turns out. My Cinderella pick is Terry Bouton’s Taming Democracy.
Of course, if my luck is like my luck in the “other” March Madness tournament, I must apologize to Professors Goetz and Bouton for jinxing their works.
Brian, I hereby nominate you as Baptism’s good luck charm. 🙂 Thanks!
I think one of the more intriguing match-ups for me is in Bracket one between Brekus and Engel. This gets to an age-old competition within religious history between the importance of evangelicals on one hand (Brekus) and the more practical aspects of religious peoples and denominations (Engel). I thought that both answers did a fantastic job, but honestly I think Engel did an especially good job at doing what historians do best- weighing the evidence and discovering new insights. Brekus on the other hand did a good job at telling the story of Sarah Osborne. Despite both being about religion, they are very different books.
This was very fun, informative and renews my faith in the slow and necessary death of revisionist history in this country!