Backlash Against the 1619 Project

    The NYT recently reported that high school history textbooks used across the United, but geared for the big sales in California and Texas, tell two different stories about United States. In the Texas version issues like slavery are white washed. A travesty.

    https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2020/01/12/us/texas-vs-california-history-textbooks.htm

    The NYT 1619 Project tells the history of the United States from a different perspective. The history of slavery is the focus of the history project. Immediately, a group of historians signed a letter complaint that the 1619 Project gives a distorted view. 

    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/12/20/magazine/we-respond-to-the-historians-who-critiqued-the-1619-project.html

    https://www.theroot.com/notallhistorians-some-white-people-are-upset-that-the-1840616511

    Andrew Sullivan said the project was Liberal activism

    http://nymag.com/intelligencer/2019/09/andrew-sullivan-ny-times-abandons-liberalism-for-activism.html

    NY Magazine called it anti-white

    http://nymag.com/intelligencer/2019/08/the-1619-project-isnt-unpatriotic-its-just-anti-whiteness.html

    The National Review added its complaint about inaccuracies in the 1619 Project because the text does not give white people proper credit.

    https://www.nationalreview.com/corner/history-according-to-the-1619-project/

    Welcome to the United States.

    Comments

    Well, shoving American History into "only about slavery" bucket seems both unfair and not even helpful for Blacks, especially considering the version and permeation of the slavery most abhorred came after even the Constitution was written (giving some forgiveness of that awful 3/5th person kludge appear a much less important issue than post-Cotton Gin madness).

    Slavery died 155 years ago in the US - and for the most part globally shortly after. While it still has many knock-on effects, just as serfdom in Russia that persisted til 100 years ago, who wants that to be the centerpiece of their existence in 2020? Hell, women are still fighting for the right to drive & attend sports events in Saudi Arabia, or not be raped by gangs with acid thrown on them in India - as largely society-approved positions. Being Muslim is largely a justification for drone strikes and our indifference to mass deaths. So our problems and beauty are much bigger than a single lens.

    A South African immigrant is using the very open US Enterprise system to push out electric cars, new solar, new battery tech, doing the most of anyone in the world to practically push back against global warming. How does that fit into 1619? The US - including black soldiers and workers - stopped Nazi Germany and then held Communism back for 40 years and then freed billions from poverty through its often capricious and dual-sided technology and trade. How's that fit into 1619? Despite our love of heroic names, the heroism in America's past has always been the teeming unwashed masses, the source of any leader's power, as cliched as it sometimes feels.

    What the last 30 years in technology (driven greatly by the Internet) have ingrained is teamwork - that a Steve Jobs or Elon Musk can have great ideas, but without an often *huge* innovative, largely independent motivated but cooperative workforce and actively engaged customer base behind it, it won't work (even though Twitter reached $1 billion with about 20 employees, thanks largely to Amazon's Cloud - their users mattered most). Uber? People. Facebook? People. Starbucks? People. AirBnB? People. Oprah? People. Much of it's free form social media or franchise, unwieldly agreements with non-employees, though Elon's being manufacturing, it's about factories, regulations, infrastructure, and of course wealthy and slightly wealthy first adopters.


    The purpose of the 1619 Project was to give a different picture of slavery and how it impacts us today. It is not supposed to be a substitute for a complete history course. The history textbooks are supposed to be a complete course and there are versions with a very biased presentation of history.


    It was supposed to be a new pivot point on how to talk about US history, slavery centrality station, which as Conersdorff notes, and I try to summarize, misses the boat (pardon the pun). 

    I'd actually slightly vaguely hoped my last paragraph above might break through your pre-canned pithy dismissal of most anything not in your toolkit, but at least I enjoydled writing it, so pttthhh.


    You have your toolkit, I have mine. I'm OK with that. 
    1776 is not a unifying point.

    The Texas history textbook teaches biased history and effects more students.

    Frederick Douglass said the Forth of July meant nothing to him.

    Martin Luther King said the United States offered black people a blank check

    roxane gay

    @rgay

    This historian response to the 1619 project is a mess but the most telling part is when they object to the claim that black people mostly fought for our freedom alone. Which is a fact! They used their whole chest to say “not all white people.” It’s a mess

    https://twitter.com/rgay/status/1209196861258715139


    Lincoln did not fight the Civil War to free the slaves


    I'm sure 1776 is perfectly fine for lots of people I know, white, black, Asian, whatever. You still want a country for your tribe, maybe Marcus Garvey has the answer for you. Y'all can sit around the bonfire telling stories of slavery vixtimhood til 2619 if it makes you feel any better.


    Obviously, you are free to your opinion and the opinion# of your circle of friends. No one is sitting around the bonfire. People are speaking out, something that would have been difficult in 1776.

    Edit to add:

    The Revolutionary War was a time when blacks fought on both sides and still lost.


    More ways to win - Declaration of Independence and Constitution with Bill of Rights are two of the most important humanist documents in all of history, enough for Frederick Douglass to reference them when scolding countrymen that they weren't living up to its pact.


    King said the documents came back to black people as "insufficient funds"

    Douglass asked what was the meaning of the Fourth of July.

    The original sin of 1619 was the reason for Douglass' scolding.

    Edit to add

    In March of 1857, the United States Supreme Court, led by Chief Justice Roger B. Taney, declared that all blacks -- slaves as well as free -- were not and could never become citizens of the United States. The court also declared the 1820 Missouri Compromise unconstitutional, thus permiting slavery in all of the country's territories.

    The case before the court was that of Dred Scott v. Sanford. Dred Scott, a slave who had lived in the free state of Illinois and the free territory of Wisconsin before moving back to the slave state of Missouri, had appealed to the Supreme Court in hopes of being granted his freedom. 

    Taney -- a staunch supporter of slavery and intent on protecting southerners from northern aggression -- wrote in the Court's majority opinion that, because Scott was black, he was not a citizen and therefore had no right to sue. The framers of the Constitution, he wrote, believed that blacks "had no rights which the white man was bound to respect; and that the negro might justly and lawfully be reduced to slavery for his benefit. He was bought and sold and treated as an ordinary article of merchandise and traffic, whenever profit could be made by it." 

    Referring to the language in the Declaration of Independence that includes the phrase, "all men are created equal," Taney reasoned that "it is too clear for dispute, that the enslaved African race were not intended to be included, and formed no part of the people who framed and adopted this declaration. . . ."

    Abolitionists were incensed. Although disappointed, Frederick Douglass, found a bright side to the decision and announced, "my hopes were never brighter than now." For Douglass, the decision would bring slavery to the attention of the nation and was a step toward slavery's ultimate destruction.

    https://www.pbs.org/wgbh/aia/part4/4h2933.html

    Again, the documents were created for white people. The landing of black "endentured slaves rapidly led to enslavement.

    Nell Irwin Painter discusses the devolution.

    There’s more to Virginia history, of course, than bondage. There’s freedom, not only after the American civil war, but also in the 17th century, when an Angolan man called Antonio, arriving in Virginia in 1621, became Anthony Johnson, a wealthy free farmer and slave-owning planter in Northampton and Accomack counties. His immediate descendants prospered. His eighteenth-century descendants, living within a hardened racial regime, did not. It is in the eighteenth century that we find the more familiar, hardened boundaries of racialized American identity.

    https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/aug/14/slavery-in-america-1619-first-ships-jamestown

    1619 was the beginning of the process of degradation. In 1776, a pro-slavery document was signed

    Painter mentions Anthony Johnson as a free man. This is true. It is also true that his land was seized because he was magically a Negro and therefore an alien.

    https://www.pbs.org/wgbh/aia/part1/1narr3.html

    The Declaration was signed by slaveowners

    Thomas Jefferson helped to create a new nation based on individual freedom and self-government.  His words in the Declaration of Independence expressed the aspirations of the new nation. But the Declaration did not extend “Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness” to African Americans, indentured servants, or women. Twelve of the first eighteen American presidents owned slaves. Thomas Jefferson drafted the Declaration and called slavery an “abominable crime,” yet he was a lifelong slaveholder. Fearful of dividing the fragile new nation, Jefferson and other founders who opposed slavery did not insist on abolishing it. It took 87 more years―and the Civil War, the Emancipation Proclamation, and the 13th Amendment―to end slavery.

    https://www.monticello.org/slavery-at-monticello/liberty-slavery

    Edit to add 2

    We know that a black indentured servant could be declared a slave

    John Punch (fl. 1630s, living 1640) was an enslaved African who lived in the Colony of Virginia.[3][4] Thought to have been an indentured servant, Punch attempted to escape to Maryland and was sentenced in July 1640 by the Virginia Governor's Council to serve as a slave for the remainder of his life. Two European men who ran away with him received a lighter sentence of extended indentured servitude. For this reason, historians consider John Punch the "first official slave in the English colonies,"[5] and his case as the "first legal sanctioning of lifelong slavery in the Chesapeake."[3] Historians also consider this to be one of the first legal distinctions between Europeans and Africans made in the colony,[6] and a key milestone in the development of the institution of slavery in the United States.[7]

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Punch_(slave)

     

     


    Slavery, Douglass pointed out, making reference to Jefferson’s anxieties in Query 18 of the Notes on the State of Virginia (1785), that slavery was a poison in the body of the republic.

    Second, since blacks were humans, Douglass argued they were entitled to the natural rights that natural law mandated and that the United States recognized in its Declaration of Independence and Constitution. Slavery subverted the natural rights of blacks by subjugating and brutalizing them: taking men and turning them, against God’s will and nature, into beasts. Third, as an affront to natural law, slavery contradicted God’s law. Douglass cited biblical passages and interpretations popular with abolitionists. As a witness and participant of the second Great Awakening, he took seriously the politicized rhetoric of Christian liberation from sin, and, as with other abolitionists, saw it intrinsically wrapped up with liberation from slavery, and indeed national liberation. Fourth, he argued that slavery was inconsistent with the idea of America, with its national narrative and highest ideals, and not just with its founding documents. Fifth, drawing on the ideas of manifest destiny, as well as the idea of natural law realized in historical progress, he argued that slavery was inconsistent with development: moral, political, economic, social, and ultimately historical. America was on the wrong side of history on the question of slavery.

    3. The U.S. Constitution

    In 1851 Douglass broke from Garrison’s position that the U.S. Constitution was a pro-slavery document, and that the free states should peacefully secede from the union. In a letter to Smith he reported that he was “sick and tired of arguing on the slaveholder’s side…” (Douglass 1851). Douglass sided with Gerrit Smith and the Liberty party’s position that the United States’ founding documents were anti-slavery.

    In his most famous speech, “What To the Slave Is The Fourth of July?”, he detailed what would come to be regarded as his signature positions, such as the view that slavery was unconstitutional and contrary to natural law, that blacks were self-evidently human and entitled to natural rights, and that slavery was contrary to the U.S. Constitution, American Republicanism, and Christian doctrine. He also began to defend violent resistance to slavery. Douglass’s second autobiography, My Bondage and My Freedom, reflected these changes, and his expanding intellectual independence (FDAB; for a stand-alone edition, see the 1987 version edited by Andrews).

    Although he initially acknowledges that the intentions of the framers was to allow slavery to continue in the states where it was established, he reported that he was convinced by Smith’s argument that the meaning of the document was not set by the intention of the framers but by rules of legal interpretation that focused on natural law. By the following year he even altered his position on the framers’s intentions: they meant the U.S. Constitution to be an anti-slavery document.

    Douglass depended heavily on the U.S. Declaration of Independence, as well as the documented disagreements and cross-purposes, of the founders. He was guided by his view of natural law, and argued that the general ideas of America’s founding documents, as part of the history of Western democracy and republicanism, pointed toward an interpretation of the U.S. Constitution as an evolving document that could potentially be in tune with civilizational development.

    Douglass’s position on original intent, as it evolved through his life, is part of the critical discussion about the assimilationist tradition, and whether that tradition, and Douglass, squarely recognized the racialized character of the nation, how deeply embedded race and racism were in its institutions, and that it was in many respects a racial state.[9] This key critique of Douglass was given by Charles W. Mills, in his “Whose Fourth of July? Frederick Douglass and ‘Original Intent’” (Mills 1999). In short, Mills argues that Douglass fails to apprehend America’s racial contract. The practical problems of Douglass’s view aside, which U.S. history revealed in the Great Compromise and the end of Reconstruction after the Civil War, Douglass’s interpretation of the U.S. Constitution is reasonable and not blind to the facts; that Americans did not live up to the ideals of their founding documents is another matter.

    https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/frederick-douglass/


    I would let it go because: the complexity and nuance inherent in the NYT's 1619 Project is being misrepresented on this thread. For instance, check out https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2019/08/14/magazine/black-history-american-democracy.html


     “A generation which ignores history has no past – and no future.” –  Robert A. Heinlein

    “If you don’t know history, then you don’t know anything. You are a leaf that doesn’t know it is part of a tree. ” – Michael Chrichton

    “Psychology keeps trying to vindicate human nature. History keeps undermining the effort.” – Mason Cooley

     “No volume of history is insignificant, even the worst chapters. Especially the worst chapters.” – Terri Guillemets


    You're missing these. I think anyone serious about the issue should read them.

    We Respond to the Historians Who Critiqued The 1619 Project

    Five historians wrote to us with their reservations. Our editor in chief replies.

    @ New York Times Magazine, Published Dec. 20, 2019, Updated Jan. 4, 2020​

    The letter below was published in the Dec. 29 issue of The New York Times Magazine.

    RE: The 1619 Project [....]

    History Without Truth

    The 1619 Project has been thoroughly discredited, but many professional historians remain reluctant to criticize it.

    By KC Johnson @ city-journal.org, Dec. 31, 2019

    KC Johnson is a professor of history at Brooklyn College and the CUNY Graduate Center.

    For the following two @ The Atlantic I used google cache links to avoid paywall issues:

    The Fight Over the 1619 Project Is Not About the Facts

    A dispute between a small group of scholars and the authors of The New York Times Magazine’s issue on slavery represents a fundamental disagreement over the trajectory of American society.

    By Adam Serwer @ TheAtlantic.com, Dec. 23, 2019

    Adam Serwer is a staff writer at The Atlantic, where he covers politics.​

    1776 Honors America’s Diversity in a Way 1619 Does Not

    Academic historians, conservatives, and Trotskyist socialists rightly reject The New York Times’ reframing of the past.

    By Conor Friedersdorf @ The Atlantic.com, Jan. 6, 2020

    Conor Friedersdorf is a California-based staff writer at The Atlantic, where he focuses on politics and national affairs. He is the founding editor of The Best of Journalism, a newsletter devoted to exceptional nonfiction.


    and perhaps even more so this one, which is scholarly and very thorough about all the arguments, with embedded links

    Fact Checking the 1619 Project and Its Critics

    By Phil Magness @ aier.org, Dec. 23, 2019

    Phil Magness is a Senior Research Fellow at the American Institute for Economic Research. He is the author of numerous works on economic history, taxation, economic inequality, the history of slavery, and education policy in the United States.


    The elephant in the room is that there are textbooks teaching two different versions of history. That difference is not limited to discussions of slavery. Where is the outrage?


    Curricula of K through 12 is an issue of education theory.. And of politics whenever taxpayers are involved.

    Would you rather have a federal totalitarian at the top chose all the curricula? Where there is only one simple "truth" taught to the kiddies?

    Of necessity, most K through 12 is simplified into agitprop.  I.E., is Charles Dickens the best representative of English literature. Is high school physics really telling you the truth of physics? The NYTimes project is simply a new alternative product for the kids and for people who don't know much about history.

    This is why people go to college and specialize. This is why learning is lifelong.

    Mho, the best method for K through 12 is to teach the kids how to question and learn. Which in this case, would mean giving them several angles of one or two history narratives (i.e., if you are going to teach 1619, you show them all the disagreements too) rather than trying to teach them a survey.

    Survey textbooks are lying by their very nature of what they omit. In this country we don't have a communitariat dictating which survey version people need to know, we have local and or state school boards deciding that. And this is also why there is often vicious competition to get into the schools with the best teachers and students who want to learn.

    There very often is outrage at the local level! Parents who care have lots of outrage at the local level, we read about it all the time. Down to how the kids are taught to read at the getgo.

    The New York Times has long been involved in providing educational materials and curricula. It's a product like all the others. It is liberal in orientation and definitely revisionist in goal. It is not rigorous historical scholarship, it is an attempt to get people revising their ideas about what kids should be taught, where the stress should be put. That is a political agenda.


    So we give the textbooks a pass and focus on the 1619 Project.


    That's a political fight across the country at every school authority, one by one and fighting textbook publishers and salesman who offer alteration of their texts to please those buying them.

    I'm not interested in fighting that fight, I have no kids. I'm interested in scholarly history. 

    This is a forum for educated grownups. The last few years it hasn't shown any signs of drawing people interested in advocating political activism.

    I think if you are trying to advocate for political activism regarding textbooks, you're on the wrong forum.

    Plus it's very much a local issue and varies by region.

    You should get in touch in Dana Goldstein of the New York Times. She's one that's really interested in that:

    I Read 4,800 Pages of American History Textbooks

    Here’s how I did it, and what I learned about how the curriculum has changed since my own school days.

    Hot tip, though: textbooks change with every era, they are both political tools and they change with the culture. It's the way society raises the kids is at issue. Check out Hillary writing It takes a village to raise a child and libertarians of all stripes getting all het up about that, thinking that only the parents should raise a child.


    Excerpt from Dana Goldstein's article:

    I embarked on this project after reporting on how difficult it had been for policymakers in a single state — Michigan — to come to a consensus on how to teach American history. I wondered how this politicized process was playing out in other places across the country, and within the halls of textbook publishing companies.

    You are mixing apples and oranges wanting to discuss the scholarly reception of the 1619 Project with Dana Goldstein's work. It's not just about teaching slavery, it's about how history, and all other subjects, for that matter, are taught in K through 12.

    If you want to blog about what kids should be taught, have at it, but I'm not interested.


    Others are interested in the discussion.


    Name them.


    The NYT engaged the letter from the historians

    Though we respect the work of the signatories, appreciate that they are motivated by scholarly concern and applaud the efforts they have made in their own writings to illuminate the nation’s past, we disagree with their claim that our project contains significant factual errors and is driven by ideology rather than historical understanding. While we welcome criticism, we don’t believe that the request for corrections to The 1619 Project is warranted.

    The project was intended to address the marginalization of African-American history in the telling of our national story and examine the legacy of slavery in contemporary American life. We are not ourselves historians, it is true. We are journalists, trained to look at current events and situations and ask the question: Why is this the way it is? In the case of the persistent racism and inequality that plague this country, the answer to that question led us inexorably into the past — and not just for this project. The project’s creator, Nikole Hannah-Jones, a staff writer at the magazine, has consistently used history to inform her journalism, primarily in her work on educational segregation (work for which she has been recognized with numerous honors, including a MacArthur Fellowship).

    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/12/20/magazine/we-respond-to-the-historians-who-critiqued-the-1619-project.html

    Adam Serwer

    A dispute between a small group of scholars and the authors of The New York Times Magazine’s issue on slavery represents a fundamental disagreement over the trajectory of American society.

    https://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:y-DDdp7ZSjIJ:https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2019/12/historians-clash-1619-project/604093/+&cd=1&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=us


    Fact check by Phillip Magness

    On slavery being the major reason for the American Revolution 

    The Verdict: The historians have a clear upper hand in disputing the portrayal of the American Revolution as an attempt to protect slavery from British-instigated abolitionism. Britain itself remained several decades away from abolition at the time of the revolution. Hannah-Jones’s argument nonetheless contains kernels of truth that complicate the historians’ assessment, without overturning it. Included among these are instances where Britain was involved in the emancipation of slaves during the course of the war. These events must also be balanced against the fact that American independence created new opportunities for the northern states to abolish slavery within their borders. In the end, slavery’s relationship with the American Revolution was fraught with complexities that cut across the political dimensions of both sides.

    On Abraham Lincoln

    The Verdict: Nikole Hannah-Jones has the clear upper hand here. Her call to evaluate Lincoln’s record through problematic racial policies such as colonization reflects greater historical nuance and closer attention to the evidentiary record, including new developments in Lincoln scholarship. The historians’ counterarguments reflect a combination of outdated evidence and the construction of apocryphal exonerative narratives such as the lullaby thesis around colonization. 
     

    https://www.aier.org/article/fact-checking-the-1619-project-and-its-critics/


    Slate

    The 1619 Project—the New York Times Magazine’s ambitious special issuearguing for an expanded 400-year history of America centering the story of slavery and its repercussions—has apparently made many leading conservatives very angry. My colleague Ashley Feinberg has assembled a summary of their reactions, from (she paraphrases) “It makes me feel bad about my country” to “Everybody’s already heard about slavery.” It’s a veritable panoply of pique.

    The backlash is … interesting … to watch, but it’s worth noting that this is old soup, warmed over. After Jamelle Bouie (who has a great essay in the 1619 Project on racism and anti-democratic thinking) and I published our Slate Academy podcast project on the history of American slavery in 2015, we assembled a taxonomy of the negative reactions we received. I spied some familiar statements in the conservative backlash to the Times’ effort. Ilya Shapiro: “Slavery is a human sin, not a uniquely American one”; Erick Erickson: “The Times … minimizes or undermines the cost white people paid to free slaves”; Newt Gingrich: “Slavery was AND IS terrible (there are slaves today who need liberating).”

    https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2019/08/1619-project-conservative-backlash-history-wars.html

    Newt Gingrich called the project, led by black writers, “propaganda

    https://www.vox.com/identities/2019/8/19/20812238/1619-project-slavery-conservatives

    Northeastern University 

    https://news.northeastern.edu/2019/08/21/what-we-can-learn-from-the-backlash-to-the-new-york-times-1619-project-a-history-of-slavery-in-america/

    The discussion is going on. History classrooms are discussing the project in high schools and universities. The 1619 book project will be made better by the discussion.

     

     

     

     


    Oh, you mean out there. Sure, there are even people interested in the genealogy of fruit flies and the mating habits of orangutans.


    Not really though. The first three are the very same exact links I posted at the top of this very same subthread  on Fri, 01/17/2020 - 12:29pm. And the quotes don't say anything about curricula in schools. So he's just throwing links at you and at the same time proving he doesn't look at anyone else's links?


    The links help prove that there is a discussion. There is a series of books planned to be distributed to schools. The discussions will continue in classrooms, that is obvious.

    Edit to add:

    From a post at the Pulitzer Center

    The 1619 Project Sparks Dialogue and Reflection in Schools Nationwide


    Teachers across all 50 states have accessed the Pulitzer Center educational resources since the project’s launch, and many have shared their students’ work by posting to Twitter and emailing student work to educat[email protected]. Educators from hundreds of schools and administrators from six school districts have also reached out to the Center for class sets of the magazine. Teachers are using the magazine in their classes to teach subjects ranging from English to History and Social Studies, and their engagement with the project has guided students in creating essays, poetry, visual art, performances, and live events that demonstrate their learning.

    https://pulitzercenter.org/blog/1619-project-sparks-dialogue-and-reflection-schools-nationwide


    Why 1619 should matter as much to America as 1776

    https://news.uchicago.edu/story/why-1619-should-matter-much-america-1776


    Go back to http://dagblog.com/comment/275345#comment-275345 read what I said again. I  basically said I am interested in the scholarship but not in discussing the textbook issue. Rather than just taking it as a statement of my preference and move on, you replied as if I was arguing with you, that others are interested in the textbook issue, implying I did something wrong by not sharing your interest.  PP asked who. What you answer is first with some of my own links to scholarly arguments!!!  Not about textbooks and curricula. Then you add more!!! Then in answer to PP's question about who, you think if you link to several things that mention the word education it's proof that there are people out there interested in the textbook/curricula issue which is not the same thing as the 1619 issue! Do you think we are idiots? It's absurd. It's also insulting. Either you want to interact or you don't. There is no halfway.  Don't respond if all you want to do is post mixed links or have had too much wine to communicate with others or something. You just did similar to oceankat on another thread. Do you think we don't know?


    I stated accurately that there is debate in classrooms. I thought that classroom discussion with teachers or college professors was consider knowledge acquired by study (scholarship)

    Edit to add:

    Doesn't have to be at the master's or doctorate level. 

    1. the quality of knowledge and learning shown by a student; standard of academic work
      https://www.yourdictionary.com/scholarship

    High schools have quiz bowls testing mastery of knowledge 

    https://blog.collegevine.com/high-school-quiz-bowl-how-trivia-can-help-you-get-into-college/

    Edit to add:

    I advised the child of a friend that Bass Reeves might be a good subject for review. The student came across an article suggesting Bass Reeves was a fraud not not the possible model for the Lone Ranger. I get suggested that he search out other sources to see if they were in agreement. Turned out that it was one guy who was the outlier. The student learned something about doing deeper research.

    Im sure other students come across stories that don't agree. The Lost Cause is a good example. You get an assignment and you find something approaching the truth. 


    I really don't care that that you dismiss the issue of the textbooks. It is important that the 1619 Project has people climbing the walls because of inaccuracies, but biased textbooks distributed nationally are not a problem. Hypocrisy on steroids.


    Straw man as usual. I did not say textbook content debates were not important, I said they were local politics and something that did not interest me that much, as I am not interested in K-12 education policy issues in general. It's about education policy, not about history scholarship, which does interest me. Your inability to see the difference is actually quite damning.  Survey textbooks are not scholarship!!! Not in any field!!! They are even often titled "Introduction to" whatever, biology, English literature, go figure. They are simplified introductions to a field. If the person is interested after having a survey, they then commence upon trying to learn the nuanced truth through much more reading, research and scholarship.

    One simply cannot fit all of American history into one book! Things have to be omitted! It's a created edited narrative, always, it's spin one way or another, always.


    Agree with AA, " the best method for K through 12 is to teach the kids how to question and learn"...and .. " most K through 12 is simplified into (propaganda) ".

    The objective for the "propaganda" in high schools is to paint a coherent glossy narrative that makes the nation's history and personalities look a lot better than they actually were.  All to create the "city on a hill" image of national "exceptionalism".  Almost everything by David McCullough falls in this category. Henry Louis Gates is the exact opposite, worthwhile history.

    Projects like the 1619 one, that cover facts and find unethical or unscrupulous motivations for the heroes, are always derided by the "conservatives". Many of that type today are as much lying hypocrites and grifters as any war profiteering, tax avoiding, Confederate Georgia politician during the Civil War. If you upset that bunch you've done a good job. The NYT did a great service as with the web, the 1619 project likely opened a lot of minds even at high school level, encouraging many to go to the book references given, including "The Half Has Never Been Told: Slavery and the Making of American Capitalism" by Baptist, for myself.


    History is literally alive. New scholars are looking through a different lens. Gates has been a Godsend.


    Here's the usual Flavius " Motherhood and God" comment. You can skip it , you've heard it over and  over and ov..

    ........................

    I was discussing competition  with Jim .  Used to be Marketing VP of RCA . "You always have to do something" Jim said . "You can't leave  the sales force with no script.. But  you never  do the same thing as the other guy. '" Oh  yeah they do have that  discount .. Have I showed you our 'open easy ' latch.?"

    Jim had a lot more to say on that topic . Whatever .I'm only using it to open an analogy.

    Just say "1776" is more interesting than  "1619" .  MEG0.    But try   "  Samuel . K.W.  Bilderbash's  has a fascinating description of  unusual Wedding Nights  in" "Everything you always wanted to know about 1619 but forgot to ask" "

    Your object isn't to  say  they're wrong about   1776 . Maybe they are . maybe not .Who cares?, You're trying to nudge them towards 1619.

     

     

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    No idea what you're saying, but have a great weekend.


    "instead of bashing their choice, sweeten yours"


    Martin Luther King Jr. bashed their choice

    William Barber bashes their choice.


    And here's some convenient LINKS! Right in the first sentence of Conor Friedersdorf's  piece at The Atlantic, 1776 Honors America’s Diversity in a Way 1619 Does Not, which I posted upthread, in my first comment, along with three other links which you later copied as if you had found them elsewhere and as if the contents of my comment didn't exist:

    America’s original revolutionaries, along with Abraham Lincoln, Frederick Douglass, and Martin Luther King Jr., all placed the universalist ideals of the Declaration of Independence at the center of this country’s founding [....]

    To paraphrase the famous edjumacation tagline for history scholarship purposes: reading (a variety of opinion and sources, including original sources, with an open mind) it's fundamental! Not just hunting for bias verification over and over and over and over. (Um, isn't hunting for bias verification a favorite thing for racists to  do?)

    I'm fully confident of anyone else that reads this thread having read around all the angles here. For you, though: sort of the opposite, you haven't shown an open-mindedness to handle this topic at all. What's clear: you want to proselytize and are frustrated when an amen chorus is lacking.


    For any other readers who hadn't the time to read Friederdorf's piece in full, he adds another link near the center of it that hasn't been mentioned on this thread yet

    In contrast, the Princeton historian Nell Irvin Painter, who declined to sign the letter, had already explained her substantive disagreements with the 1619 Project in a Guardian article. Painter argued that the first Africans who arrived in Virginia were indentured servants, not enslaved ones, and that enslavement was a gradual process. More recently, she told Serwer that the 1619 Project was not history “as I would write it,” but added, “I felt that if I signed on to that [letter], I would be signing on to the white g.uy’s attack of something that has given a lot of black journalists and writers a chance to speak up in a really big way.” I’d fault Painter only for implying that the race of a historian is among the factors that should influence whether colleagues sign on to his or her critiques

    Here is some background on Ms. Painter's expertise and career for those who don't recognize the name:

    Nell Irvin Painter is an American historian notable for her works on southern history of the nineteenth century. She is retired from Princeton University as the Edwards Professor of American History Emerita....continued @ Wikipedia

     


    Painter knew what the white guys were up to.


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