Will President Obama Travel To Gettysburg Next Month?

obama_lincolnThe 150th anniversary of Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address is fast approaching. Click here for a rundown of events sponsored by the National Park Service in Gettysburg and various other organizations.

President Barack Obama has been invited to speak, but at this point has yet to confirm. We all know of the president’s close identification with our 16th president and for the obvious reasons his presence in Gettysburg should have been confirmed by now.

Why it hasn’t is a mystery to me, but perhaps these trips are scheduled late for security purposes. Given recent anti-NPS rhetoric, it would be nice to see the president side by side with Gettysburg Park officials.

So, do you think the president will travel to Gettysburg next month?

Intentionalism vs. Structuralism in the Classroom or Abraham Lincoln to the Rescue

I walked out of my Holocaust class earlier today both incredibly frustrated and energized. This has by far been my most enjoyable classroom experience this year. I am learning a great deal from the readings and from a wonderful group of students. The class is structured around a few central questions, including how the Nazis gained power in 1933, how they solidified this power, and, ultimately, how the Final Solution was implemented. Continue reading “Intentionalism vs. Structuralism in the Classroom or Abraham Lincoln to the Rescue”

12 Years a Slave in Theatres Now

12 Years a SlaveLike many of you I am very much looking forward to seeing this movie. It looks like Hollywood’s sesquicentennial trifecta will go down with Lincoln, Django Unchained, and now 12 Years a Slave. These three movies collectively have both reflected and come to define current thinking about- and memory of the Civil War Era.

This image alone gives me hope that the movie will be both intellectually and emotionally stimulating. In doing so, let’s hope it challenge many of the public’s assumptions about the “peculiar institution.”

Anyone who has read Solomon Northrup’s narrative will agree that his story is worthy of Hollywood’s attention, but it is interesting that it beat Frederick Douglass’s much more popular account of slavery and freedom to the big screen.