Much of the content in the September 2009 issue of Perspectives on History looks forward to the future. AHA executive director Arnita A. Jones reflects on her upcoming retirement, convention director Sharon K. Tune looks toward the 124th Annual Meeting and the special sessions organized by the Working Group for Historical Perspectives on Same-Sex Marriage , and Michael H. Fisher and Barbara H. Rosenwein look toward the 125th Annual Meeting in 2011 (the theme and the call for proposals).
Everyman His Own Historian
AHA President Laurel Thatcher Ulrich on the other hand looks back at Carl Becker’s famous 1931 AHA presidential address: “Everyman His Own Historian.” She notes that “[i]t remains the most quoted speech in the AHA archive, and it is well worth reading today.” But despite its popularity, there are key points that are puzzling. Ulrich explores them and comes to some striking conclusions.
The Job Market and the Economy
Meanwhile, Robert B. Townsend, AHA assistant director for research and publications, takes a backward glance at the challenges of the history job market in the 1970s while also taking the time to examine the struggles of history departments today. The current economy has taken its toll on many universities, leading to freezes (in salary and hiring), cuts (of staff, support, supplies, and programs), and reductions (in staffing and graduate students).
Also in the September issue are numerous news articles, including:
News from Washington
Public History News
- A Picture of Public History
Preliminary Results from the 2008 Survey of Public History Professionals Toward Transparency
By John Dichtl and Robert B. Townsend
Teaching: Capstone Courses
A section of the issue is devoted to the teaching topic of capstone courses. Read about Eugenia Palmegiano and Jerome Gillen’s experiences at Saint Peter’s College, Jersey City, Ian Chambers’ first capstone course at the University of Idaho, and Andrew Kersten’s eleven years teaching the capstone course at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay.
Letters to the Editor
Perspectives on History welcomes letters to the editor on issues discussed in its pages or which are relevant to the profession. Letters should ideally be brief and should be sent to Letters to the Editor. This issue features letters on a variety of issues:
- The NAACP Is a Hundred Years Old
- On Pencils, Erasers, and Palimpsests
- On Carbon Copies: An Error Replicated?
- Digital Media and Historical Research
- Should the Federal Government Fund History Teaching?
Finally, three pieces remember historians who’ve recently passed away: