A Confession

I have a confession to make. I am a huge fan of Doris Kearns Goodwin’s books. Yes, I say this despite the plagiarism scandal and her recent performance at the Gettysburg 150 commemoration this past July. I do not subscribe to the “three strikes” rule. Goodwin tells exciting stories about our most important political leaders…

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12 Years A Slave Meets the Academic Community

Last year Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln led to an outpouring of reviews by professional historians, who pointed out what they perceived to be a wide range of interpretive problems and omissions in the film. In sharp contrast, Steve McQueen’s powerful adaptation of Solomon Northrup’s 12 Years A Slave has garnered a very different and even muted…

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Speaking Tonight in Methuen

Just a quick reminder for my Boston-area friends that tonight I will be speaking at the Nevins Memorial Library as part of their “Methuen Remembers the Civil War” series. My topic is the subject of my new book project on the history of Confederate camp servants and myth of the black Confederate soldier, but I…

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