With support from the University of Richmond

History News Network

History News Network puts current events into historical perspective. Subscribe to our newsletter for new perspectives on the ways history continues to resonate in the present. Explore our archive of thousands of original op-eds and curated stories from around the web. Join us to learn more about the past, now.

"Multiple Steves and Pauls": A History Panel Sets Off a Diversity Firestorm

Related Link Stanford History Event Was ‘Too White and Too Male,’ Organizer Admits (NYT)

Priya Satia, a professor of history at Stanford University, found out about the Applied History Conference being hosted at her university two days before it was set to start. While scrolling through her Facebook newsfeed, she saw that a friend had posted about the conference’s lineup of presenters: All 30 were white men.

The conference’s organizer said he had invited several female scholars to speak at the conference, held this month and sponsored by Stanford’s Hoover Institution and the Belfer Center at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government. But none accepted.

Critics are skeptical of the effort made to attract a more diverse set of historians.

Niall Ferguson, a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution, organized the conference, which he described as the first of its kind and an annual event. He said nearly one-quarter of the attendees were women, though none of them had been invited to present their research.

The conference, which took place on March 2 and 3, was invitation-only and was not publicized. Historians received a personal invitation to attend. Ferguson said he had selected speakers based on informal conversations with colleagues.

An official website for the conference has been taken down, but a screenshot of the presenters has been making the rounds online. Headshots of the presenters appear in rows and columns in the online images. Some smile, while others look stern. All of them are men, and all are white. ...

Read entire article at The Chronicle of Higher Education