Some Weekend Reading …

As we head into a weekend where the contending teams for the Super Bowl will be determined, other battles and discussions will continue, such as …

what will be the impact of SCV protests on Virginia Republicans?  Another example of the SCV shooting itself in the foot?

… while no one commemorates secession in Louisiana

… and argument continues over the display of the Confederate Battle Flag in Columbia, South Carolina …

… while Mark Potok takes another swing at commemorating the Confederacy.

Let me suggest that if anyone wants to be on the cutting edge of writing American history, they should start gathering materials on the sesquicentennial now with an eye to assessing it all in 2015.

Race, Place, and Identity: Some Observations

Here and there, when a person speaks or writes about the Civil War, someone sometimes raises the question: where was the speaker/writer born?  From where do they hail?  How do they identify themselves in terms of region?  Sometimes the question is also asked when it comes to race (as in white scholars writing about black history), gender (again, usually when it comes to men writing about women), or membership (in my case, a civilian writing about matters military).  In each case, often the underlying assumption of the inquiry is that you have to come from somewhere to understand that somewhere or be a member of that group to understand that group.  Otherwise, you’re an outsider.

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