History Behind the Headlines

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History Behind the Headlines is a monthly webinar series featuring prominent historians discussing the history behind current events.

Recordings of Past Events

Preserving Records: Archives and Presidential Transitions
January 29, 2021
Chair: Sarah Weicksel, American Historical Association
Panelists: Richard H. Immerman (Temple Univ., emeritus; chair, NARA Review Committee, American Historical Association), Trudy H. Peterson (consulting archivist; former Acting Archivist of the United States), and Gary M. Stern (National Archives and Records Administration)
In this panel, three experts on archives, preservation, and access discuss issues regarding the archival implications of presidential transitions.

Historians Reflect on the 2020 Election
November 13, 2020
Chair: James Grossman (American Historical Association)
Panelists: Marsha E. Barrett (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign), Jelani Cobb (Columbia University), John A. Lawrence (University of California Washington Center), Heather Cox Richardson (Boston College)
In this virtual conversation, four prominent historians of American political life offer historical perspective on the events, and consequences, of the 2020 election.

Presidential Debates in Historical Perspective
September 26, 2020
Chair: Joanne B. Freeman (Yale Univ.)
Panelists: Kathryn Cramer Brownell (Purdue Univ.), Peniel E. Joseph (Univ. of Texas-Austin), Newton N. Minow (Commission on Presidential Debates)
In preparation for the first 2020 presidential debates on September 29, this panel offers a historical examination of debates for the nation's highest office and connects these historical precedents with the current contest. 

Erasing History or Making History? Race, Racism, and the American Memorial Landscape
July 2, 2020
Chair:  Jim Grossman (American Historical Association)
Panelists: David W. Blight (Yale Univ.), Annette Gordon-Reed (Harvard Univ.)

Teaching the History of Racist Violence in the High School Classroom
June 19, 2020
Chair: Jacqueline Jones (AHA president-elect)
Panelists: Reginald K. Ellis (Florida A&M Univ., AHA Councilor, Professional Division), Tina L. Heafner (president, National Council for the Social Studies)
The American Historical Association and the National Council for the Social Studies hosted a panel on effectively using the Association’s Statement on the History of Racist Violence in the United States and how it can be used productively in high school history classrooms. Panelists explored the history referenced in the statement, the context of its authorship, and the opportunities the statement creates for challenging classroom conversations on historical and current events.

Featured Recording

History Behind the Headlines Playlist