Against Sustainability: Reading Nineteenth-Century America in the Age of Climate Crisis

By Dr Michelle C. Neely As 2020 has unfolded, the United States has seemed to walk further and further off an apocalyptic cliff. Police violence and civil rights violations go unchecked, immigrant children remain imprisoned, a pandemic rages, federal environmental protections continue to be dismantled, the Arctic is on fire. It’s tempting to wish that we could somehow turn back the clock and return to … Continue reading Against Sustainability: Reading Nineteenth-Century America in the Age of Climate Crisis

Abolition, Anti-Catholicism, and the Complexity of George Bourne

By Dr. Ryan C. McIlhenny Historian James Brewer Stewart, author of Holy Warriors and founder of Historians Against Slavery, sent me an encouraging email about a review I did of a new anthology on Wendell Phillips for the Journal of the Early Republic. Knowing that Jim, a leading historian of American abolition, was editor emeritus of LSU’s reputable “Antislavery, Abolition, and Atlantic World” series, I … Continue reading Abolition, Anti-Catholicism, and the Complexity of George Bourne

American Civilisation and Its Jagged Frontier: The Depiction of the U.S.-Mexico Border As Rough Country

By Dr. Joel Zapata Anthropologist Victor M. Ortiz Gonzalez has noted that the United States’ popular culture continually represents the nation’s southern “border region as a ‘no-man’s-land.’ ”[1] In other words, within the American popular imaginary, the U.S.-Mexico border is at the frontier of the nation’s dominant—Anglo-American—social-cultural world. Unsurprisingly, contemporary right-wing American politicians that routinely espouse white supremist ideals have adopted such depictions of the … Continue reading American Civilisation and Its Jagged Frontier: The Depiction of the U.S.-Mexico Border As Rough Country

Massasoit in American Memory

By Dr. Lisa Blee and Dr. Jean M. O’Brien Among the remarkable events in direct response to the murder of George Floyd is a resurgent activism in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement around monuments to slavery, white supremacy, and colonialism. In Albuquerque, protestors took on the statue of Juan de Oñate, the despotic colonial governor who brutalized Pueblo peoples. Protestors threw a statue … Continue reading Massasoit in American Memory

Albion Tourgée on the Color Line

By Dr. DeLisa D. Hawkes Most people who are familiar with Albion Tourgée remember him within the context of the 1896 Plessy v. Ferguson case that determined “separate but equal” constitutional. The interracial legal team that included Tourgée and the New Orleans leader Louis Martinet argued against “separate but equal,” but Tourgée’s legacy extends beyond legal history. He had an extensive career in political activism … Continue reading Albion Tourgée on the Color Line

Seeking freedom from slavery: settling Native American ancestry in colonial Connecticut

By Isabelle Laskaris On October 4th 1743, Stephen Gardiner wrote to the Justice of the Peace in New London, Connecticut, to complain that four of his slaves and servants had deserted his service the night before. He described them as Cesar, a mulatto man servant, Ann, a Spanish Indian Squaw, Ann an Indian girl, and Phillis, an Indian girl. Only a few days later, a … Continue reading Seeking freedom from slavery: settling Native American ancestry in colonial Connecticut

Transatlantic Separatist Migration and the War of the Rebellion

By Dr. Niels Eichorn On June 9, 1853 the Irish firebrand and 1848 revolutionary, John Mitchel rode into Bothwell, Tasmania, where he walked into the police station. The British authorities had convicted Mitchel and a number of other Irish revolutionaries to transportation. Instead of incarceration, Mitchel had promised to not escape and received a limited freedom of movement. Once inside the police station, Mitchel returned … Continue reading Transatlantic Separatist Migration and the War of the Rebellion

Invaders in a Foreign Land: Nature, Climate, and the Vicksburg Campaign

By Dr Lindsay Rae Privette, I spent seven years working as a summer seasonal at Vicksburg National Military Park. It was a natural fit. I was born and raised in Vicksburg, Mississippi, the battlefield had been a staple of my childhood, and I knew its story by heart. Dubbed the “Gibraltar of the Confederacy,” Vicksburg was the last Confederate stronghold on the Mississippi River by … Continue reading Invaders in a Foreign Land: Nature, Climate, and the Vicksburg Campaign

Conference Review: BAAS Postgraduate Conference, December 2019

By Matthew Thorne It was the month of December and London was calling for the British Association for American Studies Postgraduate Conference. The event was held on hallowed ground for academics and sight-seers alike; the British Library, hosted within the Eccles Centre for American Studies. Try as one might, it is difficult to imagine a better venue for a conference on American Studies in the … Continue reading Conference Review: BAAS Postgraduate Conference, December 2019