News & Advocacy

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

  • AHA’s Letter on Virginia Social Studies Learning Standards Draft Featured in Media Coverage (December 2022)

    Dec 05, 2022 - 

    In October, the AHA sent a letter to the Virginia Board of Education (VBOE) commending the draft standards that the VBOE considered at its August meeting. In November, the AHA encouraged testimony before the VBOE when the board considered selecting a set of draft Standards of Learning that had been substantially altered. The AHA’s work on these issues has been featured in several media outlets, including DCist, Newsweek, and Virginia Public Media. AHA executive director James Grossman has appeared in the Richmond Times-Dispatch, The Root, and Yahoo! News discussing the learning standards. “You can argue that the central concepts in American history are freedom or liberty, or democracy, but you cannot teach American history without helping students to understand that racism has been a central theme. You just can’t,” Grossman said.

  • AHR Article Receives Awards from Mediterranean Seminar and Society for the Study of Early Modern Women and Gender (November 2022)

    Nov 17, 2022 - 

    Tamar Herzig’s (Tel Aviv Univ.) article, “Slavery and Interethnic Sexual Violence: A Multiple Perpetrator Rape in Seventeenth-Century Livorno,” published in the March 2022 issue of the American Historical Review, has been awarded the 2022 Award for Best Article by the Society for the Study of Early Modern Women and Gender. The article was also named the Article of the Month in July 2022 by the Mediterranean Seminar.

  • AHA Executive Director Featured in Education Week Article on Teaching Inclusive History (November 2022)

    Nov 17, 2022 - 

    AHA executive director James Grossman was featured in an Education Week article by Ileana Najarro about the challenges that educators, especially K–12 social studies teachers, are currently facing when it comes to teaching inclusive US history, largely due to an influx in state-level legislation restricting what and how they can teach. “The crucial thing about a history class is that the emphasis is on context. And so what you’re helping students to do is to understand that every concept, every event, or every process, cannot be understood outside of a context,” said Grossman. “You’re not going to heal any sickness you have, unless you understand its existence and its history. And that includes the disease of racism and power relations in the United States.”

  • AHA on Virginia Social Studies Standards Revisions Process (November 2022)

    Nov 16, 2022 - 

    The AHA encourages testimony before the Virginia Board of Education (VBOE) about the state’s social studies standards process. “In October, the AHA sent a letter to the Virginia Board of Education (VBOE) (and to each of its members individually) commending the draft standards that the VBOE considered at its August meeting and offering our assistance with the process....Unfortunately, the VBOE seems prepared to possibly choose a set of draft Standards of Learning that have been substantially altered in ways that are fundamentally at odds with the AHA's criteria and the best practices of history and social studies education. A new version of revised standards, dated November 11, would create substantial gaps in the knowledge, historical thinking skills, and habits of mind taught to Virginia students. The likely result: serious shortcomings in student understanding of American history in particular and historical thinking in general. This is not the way to create a thoughtful and informed citizenry.”

  • Julia Young Represents AHA at Inauguration of Catholic University of America President Peter K. Kilpatrick (November 2022)

    Nov 15, 2022 - 

    On November 11, AHA member Julia Young (Catholic Univ. of America) attended the inauguration of Peter K. Kilpatrick as the 16th president of the Catholic University of America as a representative for the AHA. 

  • AHA and OAH Co-Sponsor Amicus Brief in Haaland v. Brackeen (November 2022)

    Nov 09, 2022 - 

    The American Historical Association (AHA) and the Organization of American Historians (OAH) have jointly co-sponsored an amicus curiae brief in the Supreme Court case Haaland v. Brackeen. This brief, based on decades of study and research by professional historians, aims to provide an accurate historical perspective as the court deliberates the constitutionality of the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA).

    The AHA and OAH support the constitutionality of the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA), which was enacted in 1978 with strong support from Native Americans to end the forced removal of Native children from their families.

  • AHA Member Writes Foreword for First English Translation of Poet’s Memoir (November 2022)

    Nov 07, 2022 - 

    AHA member Allison Blakely (Boston Univ.) contributed the foreword to Chronicle of the Left Hand: An American Black Family's Story from Slavery to Russia's Hollywood by James Lloydovich Patterson. Patterson, a poet and the child star of the 1933 Soviet film TSIRK, includes the memoirs of his paternal grandmother and tells his family's journey from slavery to the USSR and back to the United States. Originally published in Moscow in 1964, this is the first translation of Chronicle of the Left Hand in English and the first time it has been published outside of Russia.

  • W. Caleb McDaniel Represents AHA at Inauguration of Rice University President (October 2022)

    Oct 24, 2022 - 

    On October 22, AHA member W. Caleb McDaniel (Rice Univ.) represented the AHA at the inauguration of Reginald DesRoches as the eighth president of Rice University. The inauguration was part of a slate of investiture events this fall for DesRoches, the first Black president of Rice and the first immigrant to hold the position.