News & Advocacy

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News

The latest activity of the AHA and historians in supporting history and historical thinking.

  • Action Alert: Contact Your Representatives Now to Oppose Ohio SB 83

    Dec 08, 2023 - 

    The American Historical Association was alarmed to learn that our written testimony opposing SB 83, which was on the agenda to be heard at the meeting of the Ohio House Higher Education Committee on December 6, was dismissed along with the rest of the submissions from interested parties. Instead, committee vice chair Rep. Gayle Manning moved for an immediate vote, and breezily told members they could consider testimonies “after the vote.” Now that SB 83 has been advanced out of the committee, it will be brought to the House floor for a vote. Despite the lack of transparency and haste with which the bill was sent through the committee, it is still possible to avert passage of this disastrous bill in the House. We urge Ohio residents to contact your representative now in the Ohio House of Representatives to express opposition to the bill. 

  • AHA Executive Director Quoted in Inside Higher Ed Article on California “Viewpoint-Neutral” Middle East History Plan

    Dec 04, 2023 - 

    AHA executive director James Grossman was quoted in an Inside Higher Ed article by Sara Weissman on pushback from faculty about the University of California system’s plans to implement “viewpoint-neutral” Middle East history programs in an attempt to ease tensions on campuses. Grossman noted “the imperative to read a range of sources and consider historical developments from a variety of angles,” adding that, “[Not] all narratives are equally compelling. Evidence matters.”

  • AHA Congressional Briefing on Federal Housing Policy

    Dec 04, 2023 - 

    On November 29, the AHA hosted a Congressional Briefing to offer historical perspectives on the impact of federal housing policy. Panelists Lizabeth Cohen (Harvard Univ.), N. D. B Connolly (Johns Hopkins Univ.), and D. Bradford Hunt (Loyola Univ., Chicago) provided historical context on housing policy issues that Congress engages. AHA executive director James Grossman served as moderator. The recording of the briefing is now available to watch on the AHA's YouTube channel. 

  • AHA Submits Testimony Opposing Ohio SB 83 (November 2023)

    Nov 28, 2023 - 

    The American Historical Association has submitted a letter to the Ohio House Higher Education Committee expressing strong objection to Ohio Senate Bill 83 in its current substitute version (I_135_0330-11). On its surface, SB 83 proclaims respect for “intellectual diversity.” In practice, as the AHA’s testimony explains, “a series of mandates” introduced in this legislation “repeatedly insert the will and judgement of politically appointed boards of trustees into the fundamental work of university faculty, carving out troubling new exceptions to academic freedom without any clear benefit.” While the AHA does not disagree with some of the bill’s stated goals, our testimony expresses grave doubts about the utility of the bill’s heavy-handed interventions in both history education and university administration.

  • AHA Congressional Briefing Featured in Article on University of Minnesota Professor’s Visits to Capitol Hill (November 2023)

    Nov 22, 2023 - 

    The AHA’s October 20 Congressional Briefing on “Historical Perspectives on Artificial Intelligence” was featured in an article from the University of Minnesota about Charles Babbage Institute director Jeffrey Yost’s visits to Capitol Hill in late October. The briefing placed the current conversations and policy debates on artificial intelligence into historical context, and featured Yost alongside Janet Abbate (Virginia Tech), Matthew Connelly (Columbia Univ.), and moderator Matthew L. Jones (Princeton Univ.). A C-SPAN recording of the briefing will be available for streaming soon.

  • AHA Member Interviewed on NPR Morning Edition about Tensions between Members of Congress (November 2023)

    Nov 22, 2023 - 

    AHA member Joanne Freeman (Yale Univ.) was interviewed by A Martínez on NPR’s Morning Edition about “recent altercations between lawmakers in Congress.” Freeman spoke about the history of physical violence in Congress and the importance of learning from the past.

  • AHA Manager of Teaching and Learning Co-Authors Article in NCSS’s Social Education Journal (November 2023)

    Nov 20, 2023 - 

    Brendan Gillis (AHA manager of teaching and learning), Beau Dickenson (Rockingham County Public Schools), and Chris Jones (Virginia Assoc. for Curriculum Development) co-authored an article that was published in the November/December 2023 issue of Social Education, the flagship journal of the National Council for the Social Studies. In “Defending History: Educators Stand Up to Protect Virginia’s Social Studies Standards,” the authors emphasize that “[t]he story of how Virginia’s educators defended the curriculum on behalf of their students can serve as a model for teachers nationwide in the face of increased efforts to politicize history and social studies education.”

  • AHA Member Wins 2023 National Book Award for Nonfiction (November 2023)

    Nov 17, 2023 - 

    Congratulations to AHA member Ned Blackhawk (Yale Univ.), who has been awarded the 2023 National Book Award for nonfiction for his book, The Rediscovery of America: Native Peoples and the Unmaking of US History. The National Book Awards are awarded annually to “celebrate the best literature published in the United States, expand its audience, and ensure that books have a prominent place in our culture.”

  • AHA Member Featured in Texas Tribune Article on DEI Efforts at Rice University (November 2023)

    Nov 16, 2023 - 

    AHA member Alexander X. Byrd (Rice Univ.) was featured in a Texas Tribune article by Kate McGee about the work of Rice University’s diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) office, of which he is the vice provost, among the backlash against DEI efforts from Texas lawmakers.

  • Former Jameson Fellow’s Book Published (November 2023)

    Nov 16, 2023 - 

    AHA member and former J. Franklin Jameson Fellow Frank J. Cirillo has announced the publication of his book, The Abolitionist Civil War: Immediatists and the Struggle to Transform the Union, part of Louisiana State University Press‘s “Antislavery, Abolition, and the Atlantic World” series. Cirillo explores the history of the abolitionist movement during the American Civil War, arguing that abolitionists’ actions help explain how the Union war achieved both so much and so little regarding racial justice for African Americans.