In This Section
Perspectives on History welcomes pitches on all aspects of the practice of history—from the public square to the private study. Perspectives publishes articles by all kinds of historians (including but not limited to those working at colleges and universities, K–12 schools, museums, and archives), at all degree levels, and of all professional ranks. We strive to be a place for historians across the discipline to share their ideas and enthusiasm.
Perspectives on History is the AHA’s newsmagazine, published in print nine times a year and online; Perspectives Daily offers online-only content year-round. Articles for Perspectives on History should be about 1,500 words in length. Perspectives Daily articles are about 800–1,000 words. We prefer a journalistic and conversational style that can engage a wide audience. We welcome ideas for illustrations, but ask that footnotes be kept to a minimum.
Manuscripts must be original and not submitted elsewhere, including blogs or other online platforms. Neither Perspectives on History nor Perspectives Daily publishes book excerpts, book reviews, or book promotion. Articles that do not follow our submission guidelines, including word count, will not be considered for publication. All pitches and article submissions are subject to editorial review before acceptance and publication.
We recommend that potential authors review articles on our Past Issues page, our submission guidelines (see below), and our copyright policy. Among other topics, we are particularly interested in articles that put current events into historical context, such as “Colorizing Photos from the Past” and “On the Peaceful Transfer of Power.” Additionally, we are always looking for articles on teaching at any level, such as “Choose Your Professional Path,” “Middle Schoolers Take on Columbus,” or “Consider the Student View.” (For more info, visit our teaching article guidelines.) We also encourage submissions related to historians' professional experiences, such as “The Business of Applied History” and “Heterophobia?”
We prefer to receive pitches prior to an article's submission to give us a better understanding of the topic and your viewpoint as an author. Guidelines for pitches may be found here. Potential authors should also search our archives to see if we've published any stories on the same topic.
Authors writing for Perspectives on History will be awarded a $100 honorarium. In Memoriam essays, letters to the editor, and all writing for Perspectives Daily are uncompensated.
There are many helpful online resources for writers who wish to pitch editors. Pitches help editors by quickly establishing the nature of the story you’re proposing, its relevance to our readership, your point of view, and the sources you’ll consult. A good pitch also gives the editors a sense of your writing style.
Pitches contain several key elements:
- The topic of the story, the underlying problem or conflict behind it, and your angle on it. You may wish to draw our attention to an unexpected point of view.
- The reason why this story is worth publishing now. What makes it newsworthy, timely, or important for the historical community?
- The “so what”? What’s the big picture? Its relevance to historians is important, and often how it fits into society at large.
- The reason why you are the best person to write this story, with links to relevant publications. (Blog posts are fine.) Do not attach a CV in lieu of this information.
Potential writers should familiarize themselves with the sort of articles we publish and the sections in which they fit. If a story is immediately relevant to discussions about current events, please flag it as a possible contribution to Perspectives Daily if you envision it being published quickly.
Perspectives on History and Perspectives Daily welcome articles by historians from all kinds of institutions (including but not limited to colleges and universities, K–12 schools, museums, and archives), at all degree levels, and of all professional ranks.
Please send pitches to firstname.lastname@example.org. Include the word “pitch” and the topic in the subject heading.Complete Guidelines and Submission form
Articles for Perspectives on History should be about 1,500 words in length. Perspectives Daily articles are about 800–1,000 words. We prefer a journalistic and conversational style that can engage a wide audience.
If you’re not sure whether your article is right for Perspectives or Perspectives Daily, send us a pitch at email@example.com.
The American Historical Association welcomes feedback responding to our print and digital publications. Due to space considerations and in the interests of clarity of communication, letters to the editor should be no more than 500 words.
Letters to the editor should be guided by the AHA’s Statement on Standards of Professional Conduct. Please read our complete guidelines.
In Memoriam essays should be about 650 words. They should focus on the subject’s professional life, but above all should be a historian’s appreciation of a fellow historian, including their influence on colleagues, institutions, their field, and the discipline. The subject of the essay need not be an AHA member.
Authors of In Memoriam essays must submit a portrait photograph of the subject as a high-resolution digital image. Authors are responsible for obtaining written permission to publish the photo.
ExamplesComplete Guidelines and Submission form
Essays for the Everything Has a History section should be about 500 words. They should focus on a single physical item (objects, documents, flora, and fauna are fair game—we are open to it all). You must be able to write about the object with enthusiasm and in a personal, reflective tone.
Additionally, we must be able to reproduce an image of the item. Anything under copyright or archival restriction will not work for this section. Please indicate with your submission what image would be paired with the article and, if possible, provide the image for consideration with the submission. Images should be horizontal, rather than vertical, to the extent possible.
- “The Fateh Al-Khayr” by Fahad Ahmad Bishara
- “The Pith Helmet” by Carina Ray
- “The Faema E61 Espresso Machine” by Jonathan Morris