AHA Today

What We’re Reading: June 2, 2011 Edition

AHA Staff | Jun 2, 2011

The Wrong way to Lower College CostsWe begin this week with a link to AHA President Anthony Grafton and AHA Executive Director Jim Grossman’s article on “The Wrong Way to Lower College Costs.” Then, turn to the news of the bill to end Teaching American History grants, the declassification the Pentagon Papers and a recording of JFK discussing the U.S. space program, the announcement that David McCullough, among other authors, will appear at the Library of Congress’s National Book Festival this year, and the National Archives’ hiring of a Wikipedian in Residence. Finally, we round out this post with links to digital history: a digital reconstruction of 1814 Washington, D.C., the new Transnational Subjects journal (which will accept digital works), and a call for submissions at Writing History in the Digital Age.


  • The Wrong Way to Lower College Costs
    In a recent article in The New York Review of Books, AHA President Anthony Grafton and AHA Executive Director Jim Grossman discuss "the problem of ever-increasing college costs," examine a recent report from economist Richard Vedder, and caution against one-size-fits-all approaches to running universities.


  • Bill to End Teaching American History Grants
    Lee White at the National Coalition for History reports that the House Education and Workforce Committee has approved a bill that would “eliminate 43 programs at the Department of Education including Teaching American History (TAH) grants.”
  • Pentagon Papers Declassified
    Archivist of the United States David S. Ferriero announced last week that the Pentagon Papers have been declassified (except for 11 words), and will be made available online on June 16.
  • JFK Discussing Race to the Moon
    The John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum recently announced “it has declassified and made available for research a presidential recording of President Kennedy and NASA Administrator James Webb discussing the future of the US space program”
  • David McCullough to Appear at the National Book Festival
    The Library of Congress has released a list of authors, including David McCullough, Toni Morrison, Dave Eggers, and more, who will be appearing at this year’s National Book Festival, taking place on September 24th and 25th.
  • Job Title: Wikipedian in Residence
    The National Archives has hired its first Wikipedian in Residence, a dual-degree master’s student in History and Archives Management, named Dominic McDevitt-Parks.  

Capitol 1814Digital History

  • Digitally Reconstructing the Capital
    The Imaging Research Center (IRC) at University of Maryland, Baltimore County has put together a fantastic video tracing the history of early Washington D.C. and digitally recreating what it looked like in 1814.
  • Transnational Subjects
    The net seems to be burning up with calls for submissions to digital history projects recently. Katrina Gulliver (Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität, Munich) the editor of the new journal Transnational Subjectsis seeking submissions of articles that cover "cultural history post-1500, with a particular focus on urban/transnational subjects.” It also offers a venue for the growing number of scholars working in digital history who wish to present digital aspects of their work.
  • Writing History in the Digital Age
    Jack Dougherty (Trinity College, Hartford, Connecticut, USA) and Kristen Nawrotzki (University of Education, Heidelberg, Germany) invite submissions for Writing History in the Digital Age, a born-digital, open-review edited volume, under contract with the University of Michigan Press.

Contributors: Elisabeth Grant, Jim Grossman, Chris Hale, Robert B. Townsend, and Lee White

This post first appeared on AHA Today.

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