Friday, August 11, 2023


      It was sort of a lonely moment for a historian, even if it was expected.  Never a historically minded people, Americans seem even less interested in the past these days.  Meanwhile, it remains unclear what history can do, whom it should serve, what it should be.  Academics continue to doggedly address these issues, but in the process produce much that is unreadable.  Popular history is easier to consume but varies wildly in quality; the genre is largely the province of journalists, who often lack the background to see deep trends and long-term causation.  The path forward remains cluttered with question marks.

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