AHA Announcements: 2016 Archive
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.
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.
Nov 17, 2016 -
With a 14-0 vote, the Texas State Board of Education has denied the adoption of a proposed Mexican American studies textbook denounced by historians for numerous factual and interpretive errors. In September, the AHA, with the assistance of Teaching Division Councilor Trinidad Gonzales (South Texas Coll.) and association member Emilio Zamora (Univ. of Texas, Austin), sent a letter to the Chair of the Board expressing its concern about the textbook. The TBOE has communicated its gratitude to the AHA for providing appropriate professional expertise essential to the Board's ability to properly evaluate the submission.
Nov 14, 2016 -
On September 12, AHA member and leading historical expert on mosquito-borne diseases Margaret Humphreys joined other historians to discuss historical parallels and policy responses at the National History Center's Congressional Briefing on the Zika virus. To continue to inform the public health and historical communities, Duke University has shared an excerpt of Humphrey's talk via the Duke Global Health Institute blog.
Oct 25, 2016 -
The American Historical Association (AHA) has appointed Alex Lichtenstein as editor of the American Historical Review (AHR), beginning August 2017. "Professor Lichtenstein brings energy and insight to the editorial direction of the American Historical Review," AHA president Pat Manning said of the appointment. "The AHA Council looks forward to working with him, the journal staff, and [the AHR editorial] board in charting the future of the premier historical journal." Read more on AHA Today.
Oct 21, 2016 -
Rachel G. Fuchs, a longtime AHA member who served on the 2016 Joan Kelly Memorial Prize Committee, passed away on October 15, 2016. A respected scholar of French women's history, Fuchs was Regents' Professor and Distinguished Foundation Professor of History at Arizona State University. She also served as president of the Pacific Coast Branch of the American Historical Association in 2008.
Sep 09, 2016 -
AHA Teaching Division Councilor Trinidad Gonzales (South Texas Coll.) and AHA member Emilio Zamora (Univ. of Texas, Austin) are part of a committee that has released a report citing numerous factual inaccuracies and generally poor historical work in a textbook proposed to meet Texas’s Mexican American Studies standard in high schools. Drawing on the AHA’s Guidelines for the Preparation, Evaluation, and Selection of History Textbooks and the Association’s Statement on Standards of Professional Conduct to evaluate Mexican-American Heritage, the committee, convened by a member of the Texas State Board of Education, found a lack of “critical dialogue with current scholarship,” which resulted in “a polemic attempting to masquerade as a textbook.” The AHA remains unaware of any role played by professional historians in writing the text; apparently the publisher ruled out participation by scholars of Mexican descent because of concerns that they would be “biased” (quoting news reports). Here at 400 A St. SE we wonder how many of our colleagues born and raised in the United States have authored US history textbooks tainted by their “bias” as Americans.
The committee, convened by Ruben Cortez, the 2nd District representative to the Texas State Board of Education, released its report at a press conference on Tuesday, September 6. AHA members Gonzales and Zamora testified in front of the Texas State Board of Education on September 13. You can watch the hearing online.
Aug 23, 2016 -
The August issue of The History Teacher spotlights the AHA's Tuning the History Major project, an "incredible and ambitious endeavor" to articulate the knowledge and skills that students acquire when they study history. The issue features articles from a range of faculty voices, representing the diversity of perspectives that the AHA coalesced during the Tuning project. AHA K-12 members automatically receive a subscription to The History Teacher. All other members can subscribe or purchase individual issues at a discount. Learn more at MyAHA.
Aug 08, 2016 -
The Toynbee Prize Foundation has selected Jurgen Osterhammel as the recipient of the 2017 Toynbee Prize. The Prize, given every other year to a distinguished practitioner of global history, will be formally awarded at the 2017 annual meeting of the American Historical Association in Denver, Colorado, on January 6, 2017.
Jul 25, 2016 -
The AHA, as a member of Scholars at Risk, and also as a scholarly body concerned with and committed to protecting the working environment and rights of historians across the world, endorses in full the statement issued by Scholars at Risk calling for an ongoing dialogue about and the restoration of legal rights to academics in Turkey. The AHA has also joined more than 20 other scholarly societies and the American Council of Learned Societies in a letter expressing similar concerns and objections. These statements follow the AHA's letter to President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on the mistreatment of scholars (February 4, 2016). [Updated July 26, 2016]
Jul 18, 2016 -
During his trip to Melbourne to deliver the Bailyn Lecture at La Trobe University, Jim Grossman appeared on The Conversation with Jon Faine and Clare Wright on 774 ABC to discuss the legacy of war memorials.
Jul 14, 2016 -
After advocacy efforts from the AHA and other humanities organizations protesting a 69% cut to Fulbright-Hays funding, the US House of Representatives voted to maintain level funding for these international education programs. Read more from the National Coalition for History.
Jul 13, 2016 -
In April 2016, the AHA joined dozens of organizations to support the nomination of Dr. Carla Hayden as the newest Librarian of Congress. We are pleased to report that the Senate confirmed the nomination on July 13, 2016, in a vote of 74-18. Read more about the letter of support in our advocacy section.
Jul 12, 2016 -
The Royal Historical Society of Victoria selected Jim Grossman to deliver the 2016 Bernard Baily Lecture on North American History. The title of his lecture was “Celebrate, Commemorate, Remember: The Work of Confederate Monuments in the United States.” The lecture was held at La Trobe University in Melbourne, Australia. Read more of Jim’s perspective on contemporary debates about confederate monuments in our AHA in the News page.
May 31, 2016 -
The Los Angeles Times published an Op-Ed from Jim Grossman on the value of the history major for teaching critical thinking, a vital skill in today’s society. Read it online.
May 20, 2016 -
Want to avoid a lapse in membership benefits and keep your inbox free of renewal notices? The AHA now offers EZPay, an automatic membership renewal program. To enroll, simply click the EZPay checkbox when renewing your membership online. Your credit card payment information will be securely stored by PayPal (not in the AHA’s onsite records), and your credit card will be charged automatically on an annual basis. No need to remember to send in that check!