News & Advocacy
Keep up with the latest AHA activity supporting history and historical thinking in all fields and professions.
Feb 07, 2017 -
Chronicle of Higher Education released an interview with AHA executive director, Jim Grossman, on the AHA's leadership in broadening career horizons and opportunities for humanities PhDs. Originally focused on employment beyond the professoriate, "Career Diversity for Historians" has evolved to explore how preparation for a wide range of careers also trains graduate students for the changing landscape of higher education in the 21st century.
Feb 06, 2017 -
February 6, 2017 - Philipp Lehmann's article in the February 2016 issue of the American Historical Review has received the award for best article published on environmental history in 2016 by the American Society for Environmental History. The award recognizes "Infinite Power to Change the World: Hydroelectricity and the Engineered Climate Change in the Atlantropa Project." Congratulations to Dr. Lehmann, an AHA member and Research Scholar at the Max Planck Institute for the History of Science, and to the AHR staff for continuing the journal's tradition of publishing the top scholarship in the discipline.
Jan 26, 2017 -
Outgoing Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx signed a proclamation calling on the North Carolina Department of Transportation to name a portion of I-85 in Durham County, the "John Hope Franklin Memorial Highway." Franklin was a leading scholar of African American history and the first African American to serve as president of the AHA. The request still requires approval from NCDOT.
Jan 23, 2017 -
AHA Executive Director Jim Grossman offered his thoughts on President Obama’s legacy to multiple outlets in recent weeks. Grossman was one of ten experts who put Obama in historical perspective for TIME Magazine. He was quoted by The New York Times to discuss Obama as a historian. And he was interviewed for a segment on Finnish TV (start at 17:25). The AHA is proud to offer these and other historical perspectives on current events and to take every opportunity to share the importance of historical thinking.
Jan 19, 2017 -
The federal government released its revised protocol for Institutional Review Boards, which "explicitly removes" oral history and journalism from the regulations. The final rule provides that, "For purposes of this part, the following activities are deemed not to be research: (1) Scholarly and journalistic activities (e.g., oral history, journalism, biography, literary criticism, legal research, and historical scholarship), including the collection and use of information that focus directly on the specific individuals about whom the information is collected."
The historical community, collaborating through the National Coalition for History, has long argued that scholarly history projects should not be subject to standard IRB procedures, and in November 2015, the AHA issued a public statement in support of these revisions. The new IRB rule goes into effect in one year, on January 19, 2018.
Jan 13, 2017 -
Based on recommendations from AHA members Kate Masur and Greg Downs, along with other historians, President Obama has designated several sites in Beaufort, South Carolina, as a national monument to Reconstruction. The monument will serve as a focal point for public engagement with this period of American history, which is especially relevant now as we reflect on the integrity of American democratic institutions and processes. The AHA supported this important expansion of the National Park Service system with a letter to the US Secretary of the Interior on November 16, 2016.
Everything has a history.
Jan 06, 2017 -
The AHA Council, at its January 5, 2017, meeting approved the following statement: The AHA upholds the rights of students, faculty, and other historians to speak freely and to engage in nonviolent political action expressing diverse perspectives on historical or contemporary issues. We condemn all efforts to intimidate those expressing their views. Specifically, we condemn in the strongest terms the creation, maintenance, and dissemination of blacklists and watchlists – through media (social and otherwise) - which identify specific individuals in ways that could lead to harassment and intimidation.
Dec 06, 2016 -
Antoinette Burton, chair of the AHA's 2018 annual meeting Program Committee (Washington, DC, January 4-7) and member of the Committee on Committees, has been selected by the Office of the President of the University of Illinois System to serve as a year-long fellow. In this role, Burton will make contributions to the future of higher education in Illinois and bring her research in the history of women and gender in transnational contexts to strategic university initiatives. The Presidential Fellows Program recruits distinguished faculty in the U of I system advance the institution's "long legacy of leadership in the arts and humanities."
Dec 02, 2016 -
Marie Myung-Ok Lee recently argued in an article in Quartz magazine that "History classes are our best hope for teaching Americans to question fake news and Donald Trump." Despite the need for the skills history classes teach, such as the ability to "question the stories that are handed down to us," Lee cites data from the AHA on the decline in history majors and interviews executive director Jim Grossman on the situation. She suggests that in the wake of an election "plagued by misinformation," and with fake news increasing, history education is vital.
AHA members have also been discussing how to address fake news and fake sources in their classrooms on the AHA Members' Forum. Not a member? Join now.
Nov 18, 2016 -
An unusually bitter and divisive election has been followed by continuing evidence of polarization to the point of harassment seldom seen in recent American history. Historians can say with confidence that this is not our nation's finest hour. Language previously relegated to the margins has moved out of the shadows, emboldening elements of American society less interested in a more perfect union than in division and derision.
Historians should, as part of our work, explore the multiple factors that have shaped this new terrain. The American Historical Association encourages that scholarship, but at the same time condemns the language and harassment that have charred the American landscape in recent weeks.
The AHA is chartered by the US Congress to promote the study of history in the United States. To advance this goal, the association has agreed on shared standards, including an emphasis on mutual respect and reasoned discourse-the ongoing conversation among historians holding diverse points of view and who learn from each other. A commitment to such discourse-balancing fair and honest criticism with inclusive practices and openness to different ideas-makes possible the fruitful exchange of views, opinions, and knowledge.
The American Historical Association reaffirms its commitment to mutual respect, reasoned discourse, and appreciation for humanity in its full variety. We will strive to demonstrate these values in all aspects of practice, including in our roles as teachers, researchers, and citizens.
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