Author Archives: Guest Blogger


Easter Rising 1916: One Hundred Years On

By Gillian O’Brien

On Easter Monday morning, April 24, 1916, about 1,600 Irish republicans seized control of a number of buildings in Dublin. Their headquarters was the General Post Office (GPO) on O’Connell Street where, close to midday, Patrick Pearse, one of the leaders of the rebellion, read the Proclamation of the Irish Republic. This marked the beginning of an insurrection against British control of Ireland.

Swiss Army Knife_5 Skills

Collaboration: It’s More Than Just a Joint Effort

By Karen S. Wilson

This post marks the second in a series on what we’ve come to call the Career Diversity Five Skills—five things graduate students need to succeed as professors and in careers beyond the academy:

The Roman ruins of Volubilis near Moulay Idriss. A portion of the Capitoline temple can be seen at left. Photograph courtesy of author.

An Americanist in Meknès: Applying Historical Training and Skills to Diverse Careers

By Darren A. Raspa

At its finest the news media connects us with human stories and events. As historians, it is these records of humanity from the past that drive us and link us to the people, events, and processes we have the privilege of dedicating our lives to. As a contributing historical editor for Morocco World News last summer, I had the immense opportunity to both participate in the writing of history as it unfolds today, and utilize the tools we have developed as trained historians.

A reflection of the past? Many commentators and historians have seen direct continuities between today’s Russia and the Soviet and tsarist past. 
Credit: Artist KEMO; KEMOs Gallery:

Is Today’s Russia a Relic of the Past? A New Look at Contemporary Theories of Soviet History

By Michael David-Fox

To what extent are Vladimir Putin and today’s Russia recapitulating the tsarist and Soviet past? As Russia roared back into the headlines with the war in east Ukraine, the 2014 annexation of Crimea, and an authoritarian crackdown that has trumpeted antagonism toward the West, popular discussions in this country have frequently portrayed contemporary Russia as a relic of earlier times and Putin as a new tsar or a budding Stalin.


Class Struggle or Sectionalism? A Brief History of the Income Tax in the United States

By Robin Einhorn

It’s tax time again in the United States. The AHA will not be advising you about home offices or the deductibility of book purchases. Given the April 18 deadline, it’s too late for that anyway. But some of us actually write about the history of taxation around the world and, in my case, in the United States.


Teaching Environmental History in US and World History Survey Courses

By Allison Frickert-Murashige

Thermohaline circulation, Aedes aegypti, sodium nitrate, and CO2 uptake are all terms that four years ago I would not have envisioned using in my US and world history survey course classrooms. Let’s face it—even though some of us may have a hidden science nerd lurking within—most historians are not formally trained in biological, environmental, climate, and meteorological sciences. Moreover, historians, with our emphasis on human agency, tend to be a bit leery of environmental determinism. And yet, as a participant in the AHA’s three-year program “American History, Atlantic and Pacific,” supported by a grant from the NEH’s Bridging Cultures initiative, I found myself completely hooked by our environmental history presentations.

The National History Center's Congressional Briefings programs seeks to provide Congressional staff and members with historical perspective on current policy issues. In turn, the Mock Policy Briefing Program provides a model to develop and host policy briefings in history classrooms.

Making History Relevant to Policymaking: A Classroom Guide on Implementing the Mock Policy Briefing Program

 By Jessica Choppin Roney

Editor’s Note: This is the last in a three-part series of blog posts on the National History Center’s Mock Policy Briefing Program, which Jessica Roney implemented in her course on the history of Philadelphia at Temple University. Part One discussed the rationale and relevance behind incorporating the program in a history classroom, while Part Two offered reflections on the program from students in Roney’s class. The Mock Policy Briefing Program Educator’s Workshop on “Understanding History’s Relevance to Today” will be held in Philadelphia on April 6.

Manuscripts and Archives Division, The New York Public Library. "Donnell Library. Leady reading in lobby." New York Public Library Digital Collections.

How A Major in History Gives You the Intangible Edge

By Jacob Anbinder

It’s no secret that many departments use job prospects to lure undergraduates trying to pick a major. History departments in particular tend to tout their alumni’s diverse array of career paths in an attempt to answer the inevitable question: “But what will you do with that?” Among college majors, it seems, history is considered just “useful” enough to have to justify itself, but not so useful that students would flock to it anyway. Studying history, however, gives graduates tremendous flexibility in the job market.