Historian: “The challenges this country faces are a direct result of abandoning the humanities”

humanities text

Over at the Washington Post, Queens College, CUNY historian Katherine Pickering Antonova argues that the United States “has forgotten the value of the humanities at the moment it needs them most.”

Here is a taste:

Neil deGrasse Tyson recently tweeted, “In school, rarely do we learn how data become facts, how facts become knowledge, and how knowledge becomes wisdom.” A librarian replied, “Hi Neil, That’s literally what we teach. Thanks for the shoutout! Sincerely, The Humanities.”

When a champion of critical thinking like Tyson is unclear on the very purpose of the humanities, it’s fair to say higher education is facing a public relations crisis, a reality also highlighted by the recent Pew Research Center poll showing that a majority of Republicans believe higher education has a “negative effect” on the country.

This is a serious crisis. Universities face untenable budgets and a dire faculty job market at the same time the public is questioning the value of a college education in light of rising tuition and student loan burdens. But the transformation in public attitudes toward universities is not based on a concrete loss of value: Higher education continues to correlate with improved employability and incomes. U.S. universities continue — for the time being — to maintain a global competitive edge.

Read the entire piece here.

Quote of the Day

Whatever happens in the practicalities of American political development, however, evangelicals will almost certainly continue to exhibit, in one form or the other, the activism, biblicism, intuition, and populism that had defined evangelicals for more than two centuries.  If they repeat the imbalances of their history, evangelical political action may be destructive and their political reflection nonexistent.

–Mark Noll, The Scandal of the Evangelical Mind (1994), p. 173.

Morning Headlines

New York Times: “Mueller Inquiry Sets Tone With Shock-and-Awe Approach”

Washington Post: “Latest health-care push comes with big risks for Republicans”

Wall Street Journal: “Trump to Push Nationalist Policy in First U.N. Address”

Harrisburg Patriot-News: “‘Engagement’ is the theme of the day for Pa. budget talks, as pillars of agreement take shape”

BBC: “Hurricane Maria ‘devastates’ Dominica: PM” 

CNN: “Hurricane Maria causes ‘widespread devastation'”

FOX: “Dominica PM gives harrowing update after Hurricane Maria ravages Caribbean island”

A Metric to Help Us Decide if a Monument Should Stay or Go

Confederate_Monument_-_W_face_-_Arlington_National_Cemetery_-_2011

John McWhorter, a linguistics professor at Columbia University and one of our leading public intellectuals, offers this metric:

  1. Was the person’s or cultural artifact’s historical impact exclusively focused on slavery and racism?
  2. Did the person insist on their support of segregation and racism even in the face of vigorous arguments otherwise?
  3. Is the monument an ever-present part of experience?

Read how he develops these points here.  There is much to commend here. But even if we accept the metrics that McWhorter proposes I imagine that there will still be debate over how to parse their phrasing.  For example, what defines an “ever-present part of experience?” What qualifies as “vigorous arguments otherwise?”

Wendell Berry’s California Sojourn

Berry Farm

Matthew Stewart is a Ph.D candidate in American history at Syracuse Univesity.  In his recent piece at “Boom California,” he explores the agrarian writer Wendell Berry‘s decision to leave his home state of Kentucky for the creative writing program at Stanford.  As Stewart writes, “The fact remains that Berry spent a meaningful part of his life in California, and we might not have Wendell Berry Kentuckian, without Wendell Berry, Californian.”  Sometimes the way of improvement leads home.

Here is a taste of “Wendell Berry in California“:

At the age of 24, the farmer, novelist, and poet Wendell Berry packed up and left Kentucky for California to join the creative writing program at Stanford in Palo Alto. What he did not pack for the journey was plans to return to Kentucky. Berry had absorbed the notion that homes—particularly homes in the dying rural communities of Middle America—were for leaving, and that, as the novelist Thomas Wolfe said, “You can’t go home again.” Berry would later dispute this received wisdom in several essays and limn the contours of it in his fiction, but it took him careful reflection to get to that point.  From the distance of several decades, these reflections are surprising to revisit since he is so closely tied to his place and has been since 1964. But what if Wendell Berry had just stayed in California like countless Americans before and since?

In a national literature marked prominently by restlessness, roads, and waterways, Berry has written eloquently about placed people, about those who have returned home or never left. Some American escapes have been romantic adventures, some desperate necessities, and some have been both. If the American past has encouraged and even demanded a national literature filled with stories of escape, at times making a romance out of a necessity, Berry has tried through his writing to open up possibilities for an American future that includes not just escapes but returns. Escapes may be riveting, but, whether the perception is accurate or not, an escape implies something deficient about the place and people that caused it. Escapes are not just adventures but fractures.

By rendering wholly, concretely, and imaginatively one place, Port Royal, Kentucky, through both history and fiction (“Port William” in his fiction), Berry has imagined for his readers the possibility of families, communities, and places that make a return more fulfilling, more joyful, and possibly even more romantic than an escape. But he has not just lectured Americans about why they should return to their places, as he did to his. His story is not simply about a return. It is about building places that inspire returns, where duty and desire coexist. He has lived and imagined a return to a place worth preserving; he has practiced an art of return. As readers of his work know, this is not because his place is better than other places, but because it is his, by both birth and choice. To care for a given place does not demand the denigration of other places: “There are no unsacred places / there are only sacred places / and desecrated places.”

Read the rest here.

Not familiar with the work of Wendell Berry?  You should be.  Start here.

Lasch-Quinn on Cultivating an “Inner Life”

discipline

Over Syracuse.com, Syracuse University history professor Elisabeth Lasch-Quinn calls for a “new inwardness.”  Here is a taste:

We live in an era in which “self-reigns” is supreme. In the era of the selfie, isn’t the problem that too many have been looking within, at the expense of looking outward at the needs of others?

Many do think plenty about themselves–what they want, what they need. But everything from a sustained community life, to enduring personal bonds of love requires caring for others in a way only accessible and renewable by means of an inner life. The: I, Me, Mine mentality derives not from an excess of inwardness, but the exact opposite, the world of externals. The question, “Who Am I?” is answered through image and appearance, as though the question were really, “How Do I Appear to Others?”

In place of self-obsessiveness producing only unhappiness and anxiety and a self-concept dependent on others’ reactions and impressions of us, self-cultivation through spiritual discipline can provide a genuine way forward.

Read the entire piece here.

I am very excited that we have secured Lasch-Quinn as a keynote speaker at the 2018 meeting of the Conference on Faith and History.  (BTW, a call for papers will be out very soon).

Richard White: Historian

WhiteErik Moshe continues his series of interviews with historians at History News Network. Here is his conversation with Stanford University historian Richard White.

A taste:

Why did you choose history as your career?

I’d credit my interest in history partially to Landmark Books. It was a series for young readers that I devoured as a child in New York before we moved to California. I particularly remember the books on American history and those written by Harold Lamb, things like Genghis Khan and the Mongol Horde. If I liked authors, I would read the books they wrote for adults. My father was not indulgent about many things, but I could buy as many books as I wanted if I read them. The books were on sale for a quarter or less in New York City used bookstores that we would visit from Long Island.

As for becoming an historian, I’d put most of the blame on the Nisqually Indians. I was active in the Indian fishing rights struggle at Frank’s Landing in Washington State in the late 1960s. The Nisqually were the most interesting people that I had ever met, and talked about events a century or more earlier as if they had happened yesterday. In trying to understand that past and how they thought about, I went to graduate school and wrote my master’s thesis on the Medicine Creek Treaty. It was flawed—I was learning to be a historian— but it had me starting to do research, and I have never stopped. In many ways, I am still happiest in the archives.

What qualities do you need to be a historian?

For starters: patience, imagination, humility, curiosity, and empathy. Historians need an eye for the bigger picture – they need to answer the “who cares?” question and explain why what they are writing about matters. But at the same time, they need to recognize the specific illuminating details that ground the past in a vivid lived experience.

What have you found most rewarding and most frustrating about your career?

I am an academic and so the short answer to both is universities. I have been at Stanford for nearly twenty years, but my heart is still with public institutions, which unfortunately with rising tuition and declining state contributions have become less and less public. At their best, universities offer an engagement not only with ideas but with larger public purposes. At their worst, they are narrow parochial institutions devoted largely to what will enhance their ability to raise funds and to creating an instrumental knowledge that largely serves the powerful.

The horrifying thing about universities is that you constantly grow older, while students never age. But the good thing – really a wonderful thing – is that they allow me to follow my own intellectual curiosity in the company of undergraduates, and particularly graduate students, of often astonishing ability.

Read the entire interview here.

Here Comes Mike Huckabee

Huck

In case you have not heard, Mike Huckabee will be hosting a show this October at the Trinity Broadcasting Network.  According to Emma Green at The Atlantic, the show will feature “music, faith, and some good old-fashioned politics.” His first guest will be Donald Trump.

The Atlantic is running Green’s recent (and long) interview with Huckabee.  Below is a taste of the part of the interview where Huckabee actually defends Trump’s character. For many Trump evangelicals, “character” has now become something akin to being “the same in public as you are in private.”  He even defends Trump’s tweets along these lines.

Green: You once wrote a book called Character Makes a Difference, and you’ve observed that “character is that which causes you to make the same decision in public as you would make in private.” We’ve seen evidence not just that the president isn’t acquainted with the Bible, or perhaps isn’t a Sunday school teacher, but that he’s made comments or taken actions in private that don’t necessarily show strong character. Are you troubled by this at all?

Huckabee: Many of the things that have been attributed to him, that he even in fact admitted saying, were things that were 12, 15 years ago—20 years and beyond. Would I like for him to speak every day with the most extraordinary sense of faith? Sure.

But I’ll tell you what I’d rather have. To me, character is if you’re the same in public as you are in private, and I think that in many ways, that’s what’s appealing about him. It’s also what gives a lot of his critics their ammunition. Even his tweets, for example, are very transparent about what he’s thinking, what he’s feeling. But some of the more harsh things that have been attributed to him were things that were said many years ago, and there’s been no indication that during his campaign and during his presidency has he said things that would cause people to just be aghast at what he had said. We’ve had presidents that have done things while they were in the Oval Office that frankly were very destructive and embarrassing. And I don’t think anybody has made those allegations about this president.

The State of the Evangelical Mind Conference

25ff0-scandalLater this week I am heading to Indianapolis to participate in the “State of the Evangelical Mind” conference.  This two-day conference will explore how the evangelical mind is faring since Mark Noll wrote his seminar The Scandal of the Evangelical Mind in 1994.

Somehow I managed to end up in the opening plenary session with my old partners-in-crime Eric Miller and Jay Green.  Needless to say, we are happy to be Mark Noll’s warm-up act.  But like most warm-up acts we don’t have a lot of time to play our full repertoire. We each get 12 minutes to offer a review of The Scandal and reflect on the state of the evangelical mind today.

Unfortunately, registration for the event is closed.  I will try to keep you updated via social media, but I am not sure how much time I will have or what the Internet connection will be like.

Here is that schedule:

Thursday, September 21, 2017

  • 4:00 PM to 5:00 PM – Preconference Roundtable (filmed live): Comments in Context – Donald Cassell (Sagamore Institute) & Abson Joseph (Indiana Wesleyan University)
  • 5:00 PM to 5:30 PM — Reception of Guests
  • 5:30 PM to 7:00 PM – Opening Dinner, Welcome – Jay Hein (Sagamore Institute), Opening Remarks and Tributes to John Wilson – David W. Wright (Indiana Wesleyan University)
  • 7:00 PM to 8:00 PM -The Scandal of the Evangelical Mind: A Tripartite Review
    John Fea (Messiah College), Jay Green (Covenant College), & Eric Miller (Geneva College) 
    Session Host — Abson Joseph
  • 8:00 PM to 9:00 PM – Reflections upon the Past
    Address – Mark A. Noll (University of Notre Dame) 
    Session Host – David W. Wright

Emcee – Jerry Pattengale (Indiana Wesleyan University)


Friday, September 22, 2017

  • 7:30 AM to 8:30 AM – Continental Breakfast
  • 8:30 AM to 10:00 AM – The Church 
    Keynote Address – Jo Anne Lyon (The Wesleyan Church) 
    Paper Overviews – Andrew Draper (Urban Light Community Church & Taylor University),
    Christopher Smith (The Englewood Review), & Maureen Miner Bridges (Excelsia College)
    Session Host – Mark Bowald (Christian Scholar’s Review)
  • 10:00 AM to 10:30 AM – Break
  • 10:30 AM to 12:00 PM – Para-Church Organizations 
    Keynote Address – David Mahan/Don Smedley (Rivendell Institute & Yale University Divinity School)
    Paper Overviews – Rachel Maxson (John Brown University), Mark Stephens (Excelsia College), & Tim Dalrymple (Polymath Innovations)
    Session Host – Jon Boyd (InterVarsity Press)
  • 12:00 PM to 1:30 PM – Lunch
  • 1:30 PM to 3:00 PM – The University 
    Keynote Address – Timothy Larsen (Wheaton College) 
    Paper Overviews – Rick Ostrander (Council for Christian Colleges and Universities), David Johnstone (George Fox University), & Jack Baker/Jeff Bilbro (Spring Arbor University)
    Session Host – Stacy Hammons (Indiana Wesleyan University)
  • 3:00 PM to 3:30 PM – Break
  • 3:30 PM to 5:00 PM – The Seminary
    Keynote Address – Lauren F. Winner (Duke University Divinity School) 
    Paper Overviews – Karen Johnson (Wheaton College), Erin Devers (Indiana Wesleyan University), & Grant Taylor (Beeson Divinity School, Samford University)
    Session Host – Jim Vermilya (Indiana Wesleyan University)
  • 5:00 PM to 5:30 PM – Break
  • 5:30 PM to 6:30 PM – Dinner
  • 6:30 PM to 7:30 PM – Prospects for the Future 
    Address – James K. A. Smith (Calvin College) 
    Session Host – David L. Riggs (Indiana Wesleyan University)
  • 7:30 PM to 8:00 PM – Closing Remarks – Mark Galli (Christianity Today)

Emcee – Jerry Pattengale (Indiana Wesleyan University)

 

Morning Headlines

New York Times: “Why One Major Cause of Opioid Crisis May Be Health Insurers”

Washington Post: “White House warns North Korea that time is running out for peaceful solution”

Wall Street Journal: “Iran Accuses U.S. of Sabotaging Nuclear Deal Ahead of Talks”

Harrisburg Patriot-News: “Pa.’s budget stalemate causes payment delays but no urgency visible at Capitol to address it”

BBC: “Caribbean braced for major new hurricane”

CNN: “Hurricane Maria forecast to become Category 4”

FOX: “Hollywood piles on the Trump mockery at Emmys”

The Author’s Corner with Max Mueller

C7ntXjAUwAAmfNwMax Mueller is Assistant Professor of Classics and Religious Studies at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. This interview is based on his new book, Race and the Making of the Mormon People (University of North Carolina Press, 2017).

JF: What led you to write Race and the Making of the Mormon People?

MM: I’ve always been fascinated with Mormons as a people who have become the “stand in”—a synecdoche, if you will—for “American”—family oriented, patriotic, conservative in comportment, dress, speech, and often in politics, industrious, white, and often wealthy. But the church as an institution (as J. B. Haws has argued) is still seen as an outsider—even suspect—organization. I wanted to explore this paradox.

But I also wanted to explore how non-white Mormons—and yes, there have always been some (including Mormons of African and Native American descent)—have grappled with Mormon conceptions of whiteness, and whiteness as close to “godliness,” or better put, whiteness as signifying humanity in accord with God’s plan. Such an exploration must begin with the Book of Mormon, Mormonism’s foundational text. At its heart, the Book of Mormon is about how sin within the human family leads to schism, and schism manifested as curses of blackness/darkness. In 1830 when the Book of Mormon was first published, this view of race was (and, alas in some corners, still is) the dominate view of how the “black” and “white” races came to be, based on the standard interpretations of biblical curses (see Cain and Abel; Noah and Ham), which arose to justify the enslavement of people of African descent. (It’s key to note here, that the Book of Mormon, however, contains neither “white” Europeans, nor “black” Africans in its narrative, though it’s often been read as such. Instead, at least according to its “translator, Joseph Smith Jr., and earliest adopters, the origin story of America’s pre-Columbian Native peoples). But where Mormonism parts with the standard biblical hermeneutic, is that the movement’s earliest leaders taught that since race was not of God’s design—but the result of human family—race could be overcome and nonwhites could restore themselves to the original white (as in raceless) human family.

That’s the start of Mormon story with race—a story of (relatively) radical racial universalism, at least for the 1830s, which most people don’t know about. Due to internal and external pressures, within a few decades of the church’s history, what began as “white universalism” quickly became the sole purview of “white” Mormons. But fundamentally, my purpose was to move beyond the history of this “declension narrative” by focusing on how non-white Mormons participated in—fought against, accepted, acquiesced to—the evolving Mormon theology of race. So I try to highlight the histories—and as best as possible, the words of—the few African and Native American Mormons for whom we have records, to show how they negotiated living within—and also helped shape intentionally or not—this highly racialized community.

JF: In 2 sentences, what is the argument of Race and the Making of the Mormon People?

MM: That the history of “race” in America begins first from the written word—notably written scriptures—and then gets read onto flesh and bone bodies. Race requires narration, an origin story of how different races came to be.

 JF: Why do we need to read Race and the Making of the Mormon People?

MM: There has been a lot of great scholarship on race and Mormonism as of late. But my book, I hope, makes two key contributions:

First, instead of looking at how “white” Mormons responded to outside pressures—especially non-Mormons’ racialization of Mormons as something less than white (the legacy of the fight over polygamy), and did so to assert their superior whiteness—my book examines how race emerges internally from Mormon theology and history. And, again, that begins with a careful reading of how the Book of Mormon shaped early Mormon conceptions of race.

And second, my book centers non-white Mormons’ stories to show that they aren’t peripheral to this history, but central to it (and often so in ways that are tragic). 

 JF: When and why did you decide to become an American historian?

MM: Frankly, I cannot remember when I wasn’t going not to be one (save when I was in second grade and was going to be the first left-handed second baseman for the Cubs, save and a summer—not too long ago—when I was without an academic job and sending applications out to consulting firms…). I love American history, in large measure because I believe in this country’s exceptionalism—but (a version of) the exceptionalism that John Winthrop first articulated on the Arabella, in which the success of America’s experiment was conditional on its people’s the pursuit of justice. I’ve always been fascinated with how outsiders to the American mainstream (from Roger Williams, Anne Hutchinson, Jarena Lee, William Apess, and Frederick Douglass, to Malcolm X, Caesar Chavez, Fannie Lou Hamer, and Ta-Nehisi Coates) have been the most cogent articulators of this American exceptionalism and the fiercest critics (in the Jeremiad tradition) to how much America is failing to live up to it.

 JF: What is your next project?

MM: My next project is Wakara’s World, a material-culture biography of Wakara (1808-1855), who was a central figure in my first book as he was ordained a Mormon elder in the early 1850s, but then later went to war against his Mormon brethren when they began to destroy his people’s sacred lands and disrupt his most profitable endeavor: trafficking in Indian slaves. During the mid-nineteenth century, when he and his pan-tribal cavalry of horse thieves and slave traders dominated the Old Spanish Trail, Wakara became one of the U.S. Southwest’s most influential settler colonialists, capitalists, and statesmen. Yet in most historical narratives, Wakara has been reduced to the epitome of the incorrigible savage “Indian” in what Richard White calls the theater of “inverted conquest.” Wakara’s World is an attempt to recover the environmental, cultural, and political worlds of Wakara and his people by exploring material archives along with written ones. Each chapter of the biography focuses on one material object—from “Wakara’s Fish,” the sacred foodstuff of the chief’s tribe that was decimated by the arrival of the Mormons’ irrigation ditches, to “Wakara’s Skull,” which late nineteenth-century ethnologists from the U.S. Army Medical Museum dug up from the chief’s elaborate burial site in order to compare its cranial volume with other races.

JF: Thanks, Max!

Sunday Night Odds and Ends

A few things online that caught my attention this week:

Help archives damaged by Harvey and Irma

Photography, history, and politics

Sarah Zang reviews James Delbourgo, Collecting the World: Hans Sloane and the Origins of the British Museum

The meaning of Charlottesville

Trump and the end of the “American Era

The Stanford of the East

Who suffers from anti-intellectualism?

Conservative professors

Podcasts and investigative reporting

Eugene McCarraher reviews Duff McDonald, The Golden Passport: Harvard Business School, the Limits of Capitalism, and the Moral Failure of the MBA Elite

A daughter turns ten

Do ideas have consequences in the age of Trump?

John McPhee talks about the writing process

Will you be watching Ken Burns’s “The Vietnam War?”  Here is some background reading.

The legend of Lou Gehrig

The Great Mississippi Flood of 1927

Episode 25: Thinking Historically About Charlottesville

podcast-icon1In our opening episode of Season 4, host John Fea and producer Drew Dyrli Hermeling catch up on some of the important historical work that still needs to be done in the wake of the violence in Charlottesville. John shares his thoughts on “Make American Great Again” as a historical statement. They are joined by historian Kelly J. Baker (@kelly_j_baker) who discusses the connections between her work Gospel According to the Klan: The KKK’s Appeal to Protestant America, 1915-1930 and the emergence of an increasingly vocal white supremacy movement in America today. 

Morning Headlines

New York Times: “Bracing for Next Decade, U.S. Expands Kabul Security Zone” 

Washington Post: “With little to lose, Democrats cautiously share the driver’s seat with Trump”

Wall Street Journal: “U.S. Seeks to Avoid Quitting Paris Deal, Top Officials Say”

Harrisburg Patriot-News: “‘Luckiest’ lottery players may not be as lucky as they seem”

BBC: “UN: Suu Kyi has ‘last chance’ on Rohingya”

CNN: “Three storms rage in the Atlantic”

FOX: “Another man detained for possible role in London subway attack, police say”

Morning Headlines

New York Times: “Trump’s Tweets About London Bombing Anger British Leaders”

Washington Post: “British police arrest suspect in connection with subway blast”

Wall Street Journal: “Facebook Discloses Details of Russia Ads to Mueller”

Harrisburg Patriot-News: “High School Football Week 3: Recap”

BBC: “Man arrested over London Tube bombing”

CNN: “Trump is killing Obamacare. Here’s how”

FOX: “British police detain 18-year-old man in connection with London subway attack”

Season 4 of The Way of Improvement Leads Home Podcast is Almost Here!

BakerWe were all in the studio today recording Episode 25 of The Way of Improvement Leads Home Podcast.  This is our first episode of Season 4.

In this episode we discuss race and Charlottesville with Kelly J. Baker, author of the highly acclaimed Gospel According to the Klan: The KKK’s Appeal to Protestant America, 1915-1930.

The episode drops here on Sunday.  As always, it will be available at your favorite podcatcher.

While you wait, please “like” our new Facebook page and follow our new Twitter feed: @twoilhpodcast

And if you really like our work (and we hope you do), join our growing number of supporters by heading over to our Patreon site and making a pledge.

Bibliomancy and Eighteenth-Century Pennsylvania Pietists

HSP

Historical Society of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia

The blog of the Historical Society of Pennsylvania has an interesting post on a small box of cards belonging to eighteenth-century German-language printer Christoph Sauer. The box and the cards date back to 1744.  Each card includes a bible verse written in German and poem written by German Reformed writer Gerhard Tersteegen.

Here is a taste of the post:

Sauer and Testeegen were radical Pietists who lived and worked in Pennsylvania during the 18th century. This deck of cards likely possessed some ritual significance in their religious practices.

It is probable that the cards were used for biliomancy. This is a fortunetelling method that uses a book (usually a holy text) to reveal answers to questions of great significance or a cosmic nature. Randomly-selected pages of a book meant that the answer derived from the text was guided by the spirit of God.

In the case of Sauer and Testeegen’s deck of cards, a practitioner of biliomancy could use these cards to address pressing inquiries through reflection on the bible verses and poems.

Read the entire post here.  I think the author of the post means “bibliomancy.”

This sounds like a case for TWOILH reader Jared Burkholder!

The National Book Award Longlist

Ona JudgeThe following ten books will be considered for the National Book Award:

Erica Armstrong Dunbar, “Never Caught: The Washingtons’ Relentless Pursuit of Their Runaway Slave, Ona Judge
37 ink / Atria / Simon & Schuster

Frances FitzGerald, “The Evangelicals: The Struggle to Shape America” Simon & Schuster

James Forman, Jr., “Locking Up Our Own: Crime and Punishment in Black America
Farrar, Straus & Giroux / Macmillan

Masha Gessen, “The Future Is History: How Totalitarianism Reclaimed Russia
Riverhead Books / Penguin Random House

David Grann, “Killers of the Flower Moon: The Osage Murders and the Birth of the F.B.I.
Doubleday / Penguin Random House

Naomi Klein, “No Is Not Enough: Resisting Trump’s Shock Politics and Winning the World We Need
Haymarket Books

Nancy MacLean, “Democracy in Chains: The Deep History of the Radical Right’s Stealth Plan for America
Viking / Penguin Random House

Richard Rothstein, “The Color of Law: A Forgotten History of How Our Government Segregated America
Liveright / W. W. Norton & Company

Timothy B. Tyson, “The Blood of Emmett Till
Simon & Schuster

Kevin Young, “Bunk: The Rise of Hoaxes, Humbug, Plagiarists, Phonies, Post-Facts, and Fake News
Graywolf Press

Most Popular Posts of the Last Week

Here are the most popular posts of the last week at The Way of Improvement Leads Home.

  1. Rod Dreher on The Nashville Statement
  2. Garrison Keillor: “How is being struck by a hurricane so different from being hit by cancer?
  3. Court Evangelical: “God is not necessarily an open borders guy”
  4. Does Steve Bannon Have His Facts Straight About “The American System?”
  5. Notre Dame President: “Dogma Lives Loudly”
  6. The History Major
  7. Teaching American History in the Age of Trump
  8. Another Conservative Critique of the Nashville Statement
  9. Have Conservative Protestants Abandoned the Label “Evangelical”
  10. Slavery and the 1619 Fallacy