This page includes, in addition to news about historians, news about political scientists, economists, law professors, and others who write about history. For a comprehensive list of historians' obituaries, go here.
SOURCE: surfKY (3-8-12)
BOWLING GREEN, KY (3/8/12) - John Hardin, a history professor at Western Kentucky University, will appear in the NBC show “Who Do You Think You Are?” Friday (March 9).
Dr. Hardin, a co-editor of the Kentucky African American Encyclopedia Project, appears with Jerome Bettis as the NFL star discovers how his great-great-grandfather survived slavery in rural Calloway County in the 1850s.
“His story was not unlike others who lived through this period of American history and later migrated to other states,” Dr. Hardin said. “His family later wound up in Michigan where Jerome was born.”...
SOURCE: Stanford University News (3-13-12)
The recent political uprisings across the Middle East share similarities with the unrest that rippled through Eastern Europe in the late 20th century.
Stanford scholars say studying these connections may lead to a better understanding of what comes next in today's movements.
"We are all trying to puzzle through these various scenarios and understand what political possibilities lie before us," said Robert Crews, associate professor of history and director of the Center for Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies (CREEES)....
The center recently hosted the 36th Annual Stanford-Berkeley Conference on Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies. Fifteen scholars participated in panel discussions on who makes revolutions, why some fail and how to interpret protest movements.
The daylong conference, "From Prague Spring to Arab Spring: Global and Comparative Perspectives on Protest and Revolution, 1968 – 2012," took on a unique twist from years past by looking beyond the boundaries of Russia, Eastern Europe and Eurasia. It drew an audience of high school students, undergraduates, faculty and others....
SOURCE: AHA Blog (3-13-12)
Many of the stories we will hear during Women’s History Month will be of “firsts” of pioneers and trailblazers. Often these stories are cast as turning points and new beginnings, as if once the barriers were knocked down, a new world suddenly appeared. But the story of Nellie Neilson, the American Historical Association’s first female president, shows how halting and sporadic change can be.
Nellie Neilson had first been nominated for the presidential position at the AHA in 1932, but wasn’t elected until 1943. And then, even after the long process of lobbying and persuading the historians of the United States that the profession would not collapse into utter ruin with a woman at the helm, even after her successful term, another woman would not serve as president until Natalie Zemon Davis in 1987. As Jacqueline Goggin wrote in the American Historical Review, “these gains were fragile,” and, she continued, they reminded her of Jesse Bernard’s description of the “flowing and ebbing tides” of women’s fortunes in the professions.
Neilson was also the first woman to have an article published in the American Historical Review, in 1897, under the gender-obscuring byline of “N. Neilson.” Her “Boon Services on the Estates of Ramsey Abbey” began humbly, with the disclaimer that “facts are at present more needed than conclusions.” But the article already pointed toward new and remarkable interpretations of medieval English history, and a remarkable career for Neilson.
Hired as an instructor at Mount Holyoke College in 1902, Neilson was a full professor and chair of the Department of History and Political Science by 1905. Granted wide freedoms by her college, she became preeminent in her field. Still, while her male peers could accept her scholarship, they had a much harder time accepting women’s leadership. Between 1900 and 1920, the proportion of women in the AHA’s membership ranged from 15 to 20 percent. The AHA was obviously accepting an increasing number of women as members, and regularly honored their scholarship. But this seeming acceptance and recognition was not evident in the disproportionately small number of women on the American Historical Review’s editorial board, on committees, and even at the annual meeting. Simply being a brilliant historian was, many women realized by the end of the 1920s, insufficient.
In the early 1930s, Louise Phelps Kellogg secured a spot on the AHA’s Nominating Committee, and came under intense pressure from many women and a few men to nominate Neilson for the presidency. Neilson got an appointment to the board of the American Historical Review instead. Being brilliant and having advocates in important positions was also, it turned out, insufficient.
Neilson’s presidency was ultimately made possible by a group effort. The Berkshire Conference of Women’s Historians, which had been formed in 1930, advocated both for study of women as historical subjects and more women in leadership posts. It successfully promoted and increased the presence of women at the AHA annual meeting throughout the 1930s, and started organizing on behalf of Neilson’s presidency in 1938. These efforts finally succeeded in 1942.
The achievement wasn’t simply due to Neilson’s sheer competence or pluck, and it wasn’t just the result of women working within the system. As noted by Julie Des Jardins, the fight over Neilson’s presidency “taught women historians about collective action.” The AHA had opened its highest levels to women, but at the same time showed them the long road ahead.
- Goggin, Jacqueline. “Challenging Sexual Discrimination in the Historical Profession: Women Historians and the American Historical Association, 1890–1940.” American Historical Review 97, no. 3 (June 1, 1992): 769–802.
- Hastings, Margaret, and Elisabeth G. Kimball. “Two Distinguished Medievalists—Nellie Neilson and Bertha Putnam.” Journal of British Studies 18, no. 2 (April 1, 1979): 142–59.
- Hunt, Lynn. “Has the Battle Been Won? The Feminization of History.” Perspectives 39, no. 5(May 1998).
- Des Jardins, Julie. Women and the Historical Enterprise in America: Gender, Race, and the Politics of Memory, 1880–1945. Gender & American Culture. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2003.
- Metcalf, Barbara D. “Gender across the Generations.” Perspectives on History 48, no. 7 (October 2010).
- Reid, John G. Viola Florence Barnes, 1885–1979: A Historian’s Biography. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2005.
- Rose, Willie Lee, Patricia Albjerg Graham, Hanna Grey, Carl Schorske, and Page Smith. Report of the American Historical Association Committee on the Status of Women (Rose Report). Washington DC: American Historical Association, 1970.
- Scott, Joan W. “History and Difference.” Daedalus 116, no. 4 (October 1, 1987): 93–118.
- Sklar, Kathryn Kish. “American Female Historians in Context, 1770–1930.” Feminist Studies 3, no. 1/2 (October 1, 1975): 171–84.
- Smith, Bonnie G. The Gender of History: Men, Women, and Historical Practice. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1998.
- Spiegel, Gabrielle M. “History Mom.” Perspectives on History 46, no. 7 (October 2008).
- Townsend, Robert B. “What the Data Reveals about Women Historians.”Perspectives on History 48, no. 5 (May 2010).
SOURCE: New Jersey Jewish News (3-12-12)
Many observers believe that all Muslims have just a single shared attitude to Jews and Israel — hostility. Moshe Ma’oz, professor emeritus of Hebrew University’s Department of Islamic and Middle Eastern studies, strongly disagrees.
What’s more, he says, such thinking is counterproductive and makes it harder for both sides to discover and develop areas where they hold similar interests.
He noted that Iranian nuclear capability is seen as a major threat not only by Israelis, but equally or even more so by Sunni-led Arab states throughout the region....
Maoz, a professor of Middle East history at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem and a previous director of the Harry S. Truman Research Institute for the Advancement of Peace, has devoted his career to studying Muslim politics and culture....
SOURCE: NYT (3-13-12)
Peter Novick, a history professor at the University of Chicago who stirred controversy in 1999 with a book contending that the legacy of the Holocaust had come to unduly dominate American Jewish identity, died on Feb. 17 at his home in Chicago. He was 77.
The cause was lung cancer, his wife, Joan, said.
Dr. Novick — “a nonobservant Jew,” according to his wife — was the author of “The Holocaust in American Life,” in which he asked why the Nazi genocide had “come to loom so large” and “whether the prominent role the Holocaust has come to play in both American Jewish and general American discourse is as desirable a development as most people seem to think it is.”
He was skeptical that it was, and 10 years of research, he added, “confirmed the skepticism.”
Dr. Novick did not deny the enormity of the Holocaust or suggest that it should be forgotten. But he contended that at a time of increasing assimilation, intermarriage and secularization, it had become “virtually the only common denominator of American Jewish identity in the late 20th century.”...
SOURCE: Forbes (3-13-12)
“Well behaved women rarely make history” ~Laurel Thatcher Ulrich
I often wear a t-shirt bearing historian Ulrich’s advice because people react with a chuckle and it starts conversations. Conversations we need because women’s history is rarely given its due.
March is Women’s History Month, so designated because history has largely been framed through the male lens, recorded by male pens, and thus not surprisingly showcases men as the protagonists and the leaders; women, if noticed at all, play supporting roles (unless of course they take “male” personas, such as generals)....
SOURCE: Michael Berenbaum for the Jewish Daily Forward (3-13-12)
Michael Berenbaum is a professor of Jewish Studies and director of the Sigi Ziering Institute: Exploring the Ethical and Religious Implications of theHolocaust, at the American Jewish University in Los Angeles.
Peter Novick argued that the Holocaust had been overemphasized in American culture and manipulated by prominent Jewish organizations to preclude any criticism of Israel’s policy toward the Palestinians. He asserted that it was used to strengthen Jewish identity by making a long-defeated enemy central to that identity at precisely the point when Jews have gained full acceptance in American national life. Novick saw this as a fixation that allowed Jews to see themselves as oppressed when they have, in fact, become privileged.
Novick, who died on February 17 at age 77, held views on the Holocaust that were antithetical to everything to which I have devoted my professional life. But Novick was my friend as well as my opponent. This was so because he embodied the best in American intellectual life, offering others a model of what it means to be a serious scholar.
Long before publishing “The Holocaust in American Life” in 1999, Novick, who taught at the University of Chicago, had established his reputation as a bold historian willing to tackle difficult and controversial topics head-on. His first book, “The Resistance Versus Vichy,” published in 1968, examined the purging and execution of French collaborators with the Vichy regime after World War II. Novick who estimated that anywhere from 10,000 to 100,000 collaborators were killed then, brought into the open the degree of collaboration between the French populace and the Vichy regime, and the vengeance the Resistance sought in the war’s aftermath — much to the discomfort of the French, who were constructing the myth of the Resistance as the embodiment of their response to Nazi conquest....
SOURCE: Lakes Mail (AU) (3-13-12)
GUNNER Albert (Neil) Cleary was a brave victim of the most appalling atrocities by Japanese guards in Borneo during World War II, agrees military historian Lynette Silver.
But Silver insists Cleary should never have been given the posthumous distinction of being mentioned in dispatches in 2011, still less be now considered by this week's Defence Honours and Awards Tribunal for a posthumous Victoria Cross.
She says the evidence being used to support Cleary's elevation to the pantheon of Australian war heroes is based on perjured testimony given by two of Cleary's fellow POWs, Private Keith Botterill and Lance Bombardier Bill Moxham.
Silver says Botterill and Moxham - frustrated by what they viewed as lenient punishments being handed out to their Japanese torturers - lied under oath at the War Crimes Trials held in Papua New Guinea in 1946 about how Cleary died on May 20, 1945, at Ranau.
SOURCE: News.am (3-12-12)
The Turkish authorities assisted in the anti-Armenian demonstration, which was held in Istanbul’s Taksim Square on February 26 and under the pretense of commemorating the Khojaly incidents, the renowned Turkish historian Taner Akcam said in an interview with Taraf daily of Turkey.
Akcam also noted that there were anti-Armenian slogans even before the actual demonstration.
“Large posters that read: ‘Don’t believe in the Armenian lies!’ were posted in Istanbul streets continuously for ten days. Subsequently, the instilling of enmity toward the Armenians was spread during demonstration itself, in which partook the Minister of Internal Affairs....
SOURCE: Daily Princetonian (3-9-12)
Like many American fathers, after Wilson School professor Julian Zelizer wakes up in the morning, he takes his kids to school and then heads to the gym. But instead of watching sports highlights or listening to music while he lifts weights, Zelizer mulls over ideas for his weekly CNN column.
It is rare for professors to appear in mass media as much as Zelizer does. In addition to teaching HIS 583: Readings in American Political History this semester, Zelizer has appeared 18 times on Bloomberg television in the past month. On Sept. 10, he authored a column in The New York Times about the history of one-term presidents. Two days later, he was back in his home outlet, penning away on the political legacy of 9/11....
SOURCE: WaPo (3-9-12)
Marion G. Merrill, 97, a civil rights activist and writer, died of heart ailments Feb. 16 at Cokesbury Village retirement community in Hockessin, Del., where she had lived since 1988. The death was confirmed by Donald A. Ritchie, a friend of the family.
Mrs. Merrill was the widow of Horace Samuel Merrill, a professor of history at the University of Maryland. She was co-author with him of a 1971 book, “The Republican Command, 1897-1913.” They had been married for 53 years when he died in 1996. Mrs. Merrill also helped her husband in the mentoring of graduate students....
SOURCE: University of Chicago News (3-2-12)
Peter Novick, a University of Chicago historian whose specialty was the study of history itself, or historiography, died Feb. 17 at the age of 77. Novick, professor emeritus of history, used his formidable skills to explain how different views of the past can shape the retelling of history and establish narratives that have a power of their own.
Early success suggests Novick might have had a career as an historian of 20th-century France. His Columbia University doctoral thesis, awarded the Clark M. Ansley Award, was published in 1968 as The Resistance Versus Vichy: The Purge of Collaborators in Liberated France. In response to a vigorous national debate about the role of Vichy in wartime France, the book was translated and published in 1985 as L’Epuration Française, 1944-1949, a popular “Le Grand Livre du Mois” book club selection.
But Novick’s interest in how the past is talked, thought and written about led to the two landmark books that followed: That Noble Dream: The ‘Objectivity Question’ and the American Historical Profession (1988) and The Holocaust in American Life (1999).
“That Noble Dream dissected and deflated the ‘myth,’ as Peter called it, of scientific objectivity that had legitimated the institutionalization of history in the American university from the late 19th century on,” said his colleague Jan Goldstein, the Norman and Edna Freehling Professor in History at UChicago....
SOURCE: Boston.com (3-6-12)
For businesses wanting to increase sales, Bonnie Hurd Smith of Ipswich, historian and author of the book, We Believe in You, thinks National Women’s History Month might be the answer. Featuring women’s history in your business, she says, can attract women clients, members, and donors, and Smith sees history as the key to success personally and professionally.
As a result in 2010, Smith founded History Smiths, a public relations and marketing agency that incorporates history in service to organizations, businesses, communities, and individuals on the North Shore.
She says every business or organization—for profit or not-for-profit—wants to attract customers and their loyalty as well as media attention while also developing a positive reputation. Many also want to make a difference in their communities.
“Getting involved with history can do all of that for you,” Smith said. “Studying women’s history makes us feel less alone. We can see the experience of women who succeeded and how they achieved their goals.”...
SOURCE: Russia Today (3-6-12)
Russia’s ambassador to Latvia has blasted the country’s move to declare two Russian historians persona non grata after presenting an exhibition on war crimes committed by Nazis and their Latvian collaborators.
Blacklisting Russian historians Aleksandr Dyukov and Vladimir Simindey is a non-friendly step on Latvia’s side, Ambassador Aleksandr Veshnyakov has told the press. The official added that he learned about the incident from the media and promised to discuss the issue with Latvian Foreign Minister on Wednesday. The ambassador also noted that Russia reserved the right for retaliatory action, even though such steps would not assist with historical research in any way.
The Latvian Foreign Ministry declared Dyukov and Simindey personae non grata on March 2, banning them from entry in Latvia and other states of the Schengen zone. The Foreign Ministry spokesman explained the move by the fact that the historians’ actions “were harming Latvia and its citizens”. The move followed the opening of the "Stolen Childhood" exhibition dedicated to the inmates of Nazi concentration camps in Latvia....
SOURCE: Fitzrovia News (3-6-12)
A book about Charles Dickens’ life in Cleveland Street written by a Cambridge historian and published by Oxford University Press (OUP) in February has been criticised after it failed to acknowledge previously published works.
In Dickens & the Workhouse Dr Ruth Richardson uncovers new material about Charles Dickens’ life in nineteenth-century London. She discovers that many of the characters in Dickens’ books were based on real people living in and around Cleveland Street in what is now Fitzrovia. In the book she provides historical material that for the first time shows how the workhouse in Cleveland Street was the inspiration for Dickens’ novel Oliver Twist.
Dr Richardson’s work has been credited with being the main reason why the former Strand Union Workhouse was given listed status by the government last year and subsequently saved from demolition. She was internationally recognised for her work....
SOURCE: Robert B. Townsend at the AHA Blog (3-5-12)
Robert B. Townsend is deputy director of the American Historical Association.
The American Historical Association is pleased to announce the expansion of the William Gilbert Award for the Best Article on History Teaching. Starting this year, the award will be conferred annually and the winning author of the article as well as the journal that publishes it will each receive $1,000. These changes will (we hope) encourage journals to accept more articles on the teaching of history.
Edwyna Gilbert, a professor of English at the University of Kansas, established the award in the memory of her late husband, a historian, in 1995. Her goal was both to promote history teaching and to encourage journals to seek essays on pedagogy for publication. She passed away last May, leaving an additional $110,000 to supplement the original $10,000 bequest for the award. After due consideration, the AHA’s Teaching Division decided to expand the award in a way that seems consistent with her original wishes. And in recognition of her very generous support of the award, the Division and the AHA Council agreed to change the name to the “William and Edwyna Gilbert Award.”
For the 2012 award, articles by AHA members published between June 1, 2011, and May 31, 2012, may be nominated for consideration. We will accept nominations from both journals and individual members for articles on the teaching of history (including scholarship of teaching and learning, methodology, and theory of pedagogy). Journals, magazines, and other serials can submit up to two articles for each award cycle. Each nominator is required to provide a brief letter of support (no more than two pages) with the article.
Nominations can be submitted in either print or electronic form. If you are submitting in paper form, please send six copies of the letter of support and article to Gilbert Award Coordinator, American Historical Association, 400 A St., SE, Washington, DC 20003. Electronic submissions of the same materials should be sent by e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. Nominations must be submitted by July 15, 2012. Entries will not be returned. No faxes will be accepted.
SOURCE: Telegraph (UK) (3-6-12)
A leading historian and Cambridge academic has outlined all the key events in British history that teenagers should learn.
The dates range from the Anglo-Saxon conquest in 500 A.D to the appointment of Winston Churchill as Prime Minister in 1940.
The Battle of Agincourt, the Magna Carta, the Abolition of slavery and the King James Bible are included in the chornology that shows how Britain was shaped over 1,500 years
Professor David Abulafia, professor of Mediterranean history at Gonville and Caius College, said pupils were too often required to interpret sources instead of studying history itself. This had ‘deadened interest in the past among students’....
SOURCE: Paul Hockenos in the Chronicle of Higher Ed (3-4-12)
The home of the German Historical Institute in downtown Warsaw is a handsome, 19th-century neo-Renaissance residence with arched doorways and a tranquil, cobbled courtyard. It is one of the few structures in Warsaw that the Nazis didn't raze during their 1939-45 occupation of the Polish capital. "Ironic, isn't it?," says Katrin Stoll, a young German researcher there. "A building the Germans didn't manage to destroy and now we're here."
Supported by Germany's ministry of science and education, the institute was established in 1993 to promote collaborative research, scholarly discourse, and exchanges between Germany and Poland, with a particular emphasis on the dictatorships and violence of the 20th century. It houses 14 historians and researchers—two-thirds of whom are German, the others Polish—whose publications at the institute include more than 75 books and hundreds of shorter studies.
In its high-ceilinged, patrician halls, the institute hosts an impressive range of conferences, lectures, and panel discussions; the topics never stray far from the events that compelled the Yale historian Timothy Snyder to label these territories—Central Europe from the Baltic coast to the Black Sea—as the "bloodlands" in his 2010 book Bloodlands: Europe Between Hitler and Stalin (Basic Books).
Eduard Mühle, a German historian and the institute's director, takes pains to explain the institute's purpose. Mühle is acutely aware of the awkwardness of Germans, of all peoples, appearing to "tell the Poles how to do it."
"We are modest participants in Polish historiography," he says. "We're working together with Polish colleagues and helping them put Polish history in a European context. We share in their discussions and try to bring over ideas, concepts, and trends from German academia. German historiography has something to offer, but it has to be done cautiously, with the past in mind."
Yet some of the institute's topics are prickly ones for Poles and their neighbors, like the Baltic states and Ukraine. Stoll, for example, studies the fate of Polish Jews in 1946-7 Poland, after the Germans capitulated. The subject is a sensitive one here, as anti-Semitism was rife in postwar Poland, prompting vicious pogroms in some parts of the country.
"The Holocaust didn't end when the Red Army entered Poland in 1944," says Stoll, who last year organized a conference at the institute titled "To Stay or Go? Jews in Europe in the Immediate Aftermath of the Holocaust." "It's a difficult topic for Poles," she says, but at the conference, "they were discussing it openly in a way I don't think they were 15 years ago."
So how can Germans, and in particular German historians, aid their eastern neighbors—if at all—in the former bloodlands? The question arises whether Germany is in a position to "export," as the British historian Timothy Garton Ash puts it, its experience in coming to terms with an ignominious past.
The Germans have special, notoriously difficult-to-translate terms for their rigorous processing of the past, namely Vergangenheitsbewältigung and Aufarbeitung der Geschichte. Perhaps Garton Ash comes closest to the mark in translating them as "past-beating." This complex treatment spans disciplines—from law to theology—and categories from truth-seeking and atonement to reconciliation and remembrance. At West Germany's universities, tough-minded historians played a critical role in probing and questioning the taboos of early post-World War II years, at a time when politicians and society alike preferred to concentrate on economic recovery.
Postwar Germany's battle to come to terms with its past stands out as unique—and uniquely successful. Germans understand this process, which happened in fits and starts, and sometimes in the face of trenchant opposition, as integral to their forging a liberal democracy out of the ruins of the Reich. Today postwar Germans stake their republic's legitimacy on this "negative memory" and go to great lengths to ensure that future generations imbibe its lessons. Moreover, the Germans went about it not once but twice: with Nazism's legacy and then, after the cold war, with the Communist past in the unified country's eastern states.
In fact, so exemplary is the German experience that it has been adapted—with wide-ranging, country-specific variations—in post-totalitarian societies from South Africa to Chile. But those countries do not have such deeply traumatic relationships with Germany as do Central and Eastern Europe.
Germany may have something to pass on to the Central Europeans, explains the Polish intellectual Konstanty Gebert, of the foreign-affairs think tank the European Council on Foreign Relations. "The problem is that Germany cannot decently offer it."
"So, you come in, you show us how to kill the Jews, and now you come in and show us how to be sorry?" he says. "It can't work."...
SOURCE: Stanford University News (3-5-12)
There are no orderly rows of desks in Valerie Ziegler's high school history class – students sit in groups of three or four at small tables around the room. There also is no lectern because there are no lectures. And perhaps most striking, there are no textbooks.
The 11th-grade class at Abraham Lincoln High School in San Francisco learns about the Vietnam War, women's suffrage, civil rights, the Great Depression and other major events in U.S. history by analyzing journal writings, memoirs, speeches, songs, photographs, illustrations and other documents of the era.
"I always tell my students they're historians-in-training, so the work we do in here is that of a historian," Ziegler said.
The curriculum was introduced in 2008 at five schools in the San Francisco Unified School District as part of a study by Abby Reisman, who was the head curriculum designer while completing her doctoral work at Stanford.
It is now available through a partnership with the district to any teacher who chooses to use it and is free to download from the Internet. The program is also being developed for middle-school students.
"In all too many history classrooms, it's still the single voice of the textbook that students hear," said education Professor Sam Wineburg, who directs the Stanford History Education Group. "We need to break the stranglehold of the textbook by introducing students to the variety of voices they encounter in the past through primary sources."...
SOURCE: Houston Chronicle (3-3-12)
In a quest worthy of Indiana Jones, official Rice University historian Melissa Kean braves menacing cobwebbed recesses on her campus that few others even know exist. In search of historic gems - Rice turns 100 this year - the intrepid researcher has discovered vacuum tube-studded remnants of an early computer, old student scrapbooks, the first school president's black top hat and boxes brimming with relics of ancient gridiron battles lost and won.
In a typical day, the lawyer-turned-academic explores, gathers and interprets for 10 hours or more. Then she retreats to her home, where, in a chatty university history blog, www.ricehistorycorner.com, she shares her discoveries with the world.
Kean, 53, first came to Rice as a history graduate student in 1991. "Sometimes people will ask me if I don't get bored, spending 20 years in the same archives," she said. "But stuff keeps coming, coming, coming. It's like being in a really long, really good marriage. I know so much that it's almost wild."...
SOURCE: Winnipeg Free Press (3-5-12)
A history professor at the University of Winnipeg is asking residents to search their basements and attics for hidden treasure.
But Prof. Alexander Freund, the chair in German-Canadian studies at the university, isn't looking for gold or jewels -- he's hoping to find tapes of interviews with refugees who came to Manitoba after the Second World War and during the Cold War.
Freund is leading a project to digitize and archive the history of refugees in the province.
"We're very convinced there are interviews out there," he said in an interview. "We don't know how many."...
SOURCE: WaPo (3-5-12)
DALLAS — A Dallas conference to explore the power and mystique of first ladies that will culminate with a panel featuring Laura Bush and her mother-in-law, Barbara, began Monday with a discussion on the influence of the women who have held the post throughout history.
“The thing to me that is so remarkable about the women who have assumed this position is how much guts they have, how much brains they have, stamina that is beyond imagination and a willingness to rise above it and just do it,” said Allida Black, a research professor of history and international affairs at The George Washington University....
In a morning panel, historians discussed several first ladies including Dolley Madison, whose influence in Washington went far beyond her time as first lady, and Lady Bird Johnson, who had the hard task of taking on the role after the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.
“It wasn’t like when anybody else came into the White House,” said Bess Abell, who was White House social secretary for the Johnsons....
SOURCE: Rachel Donadio for the NYT (2-25-12)