Junto March Madness 2014: The Sweet 16

JMM Logo 2The first weekend of the NCAA tournament is done and dusted, and while Cinderellas like Dayton and Tennessee are making their way to regional finals, so the best early American history books since 2000 are getting ready for their equivalent of the showdown at Madison Square Garden. As befits such a grand stage, there are some marquee matchups. Who will prevail? As ever, your votes will decide!

In Bracket One, Alan Taylor’s Civil War of 1812 faces off against Daniel Richter’s Facing East. In Bracket 2, 10-plus seeds Jennifer Morgan and Paul Mapp hope to continue their run through to the quarterfinals. Will Bracket Three move towards the expected showdown between Seth Rockman and Annette Gordon-Reed for a place in the Final Four? And in Bracket Four, Woody Holton’s Unruly Americans may have been given an 8 seed, but is currently making strong progress for a shot at the championship.

Please vote for your favorites in the polls below. Voting closes at midnight EST, and results will be announced tomorrow. The quarterfinals, or Elite Eight if you prefer, will take place on Wednesday. If you want to see how the tournament has progressed so far, follow the links on this page.

Please let us know your opinion on the matchups, either in the comment thread here, or on Twitter, using the hashtag #JMM14. Happy voting!





2 responses

  1. I shall be eagerly anticipating the results of three of the contests. Can a 17th century study on religion overcome a book on the American Revolution? Will my newly anointed role as a good luck charm be sustained? Have enough people read Gould’s book, or have an interest in his approach and thesis? What will the decision of the community say about current historiography?

    How will the readers compare the divergent books in the Gordon-Reed / Brown match? Will the readers choose a book about an exclusively American subject the history of a family that contains the DNA of Thomas Jefferson with its rather straightforward methodology, or will the readers gravitate to a Caribbean history of death with a plethora of interpretive approaches?

    Lastly, who will win the mentor / student contest between T.H. Breen and Seth Cotlar?

  2. Uhhh, THOM is not just about “an exclusively American subject.” The whole middle section (very long–way,way too long some say) is a consideration of 18th century Paris, the Revolution, the state of the law and slavery in that country and its colonies, and a mini-disquisition on small pox and medical care in France.

    “Rather straight forward methodology?” I don’t think so!

    “History of a family that contains the DNA of Thomas Jefferson”? Pretty dismissive of the story of four generations of an enslaved family, only seven of whom–his children–had his DNA. It was a very, very big family…

    All that said, Vince’s book is fabulous.


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