[A Recap of the month that was in AmericanStudying.]
June 29: Patriotism’s Contested Histories: Ben and William Franklin: A July 4th series inspired by my upcoming book kicks off with it does and doesn’t make sense to define Revolutionary Loyalists as American patriots.
June 30: Patriotism’s Contested Histories: Francis Scott Key’s Anthem: The series continues with a context and predecessor that add interesting layers to our troubling national anthem.
July 1: Patriotism’s Contested Histories: “The Battle Hymn of the Republic”: Three patriotic elements to Julia Ward Howe’s Civil War anthem, as the series rolls on.
July 2: Patriotism’s Contested Histories: The Espionage and Sedition Acts: Three telling moments from the histories of the extreme, all too salient 1917 and 1918 laws.
July 3: Patriotism’s Contested Histories: Vietnam, Spitting Protesters, and Jane Fonda: The series concludes with a few paragraphs from my book’s 1960s chapter.
July 4-5: Patriotism’s Contested Histories: Update on Of Thee I Sing!: And speaking of that book, an update on where it stands here in July 2020—check out the first blurb on the website!
July 6: Presidential Medals of Freedom: 1963 Recipients: On the anniversary of Kennedy’s creation of the honor, a Medals of Freedom series kicks off with the different categories represented by those initial 30 recipients.
July 7: Presidential Medals of Freedom: Walt Disney and T.S. Eliot: The series continues with a striking, telling pair of 1964 honorees.
July 8: Presidential Medals of Freedom: Jesse Owens and Joe DiMaggio: The diverging American stories of the first two athletes to receive medals, as the series rolls on.
July 9: Presidential Medals of Freedom: Jacques Cousteau and Chuck Yeager: Two 1985 recipients who embody two distinct visions of scientific progress.
July 10: Presidential Medals of Freedom: Springsteen and Elvis: Two recent nominees who reflect the medal’s roles as unifying occasion or partisan instrument.
July 11-12: Presidential Medals of Freedom: Rush Limbaugh: The series concludes with the more obvious and more subtle ways that the most recent recognition broke tradition.
July 13: AmericanStudying Watchmen: Tulsa: A series on last year’s best TV show kicks off with the show’s stunning opening sequence.
July 14: AmericanStudying Watchmen: Hooded Justice: The series continues with the adaptation choice that changes everything, and why it makes perfect sense.
July 15: AmericanStudying Watchmen: Rorschach and Looking Glass: How both the new show and a new character challenge a fan favorite, as the series binges on.
July 16: AmericanStudying Watchmen: Dr. Manhattan: Two ways the show humanizes the graphic novel’s most (literally) fantastic character.
July 17: AmericanStudying Watchmen: White Supremacy and America: The series concludes with one overarching choice I love, and one I’m still thinking about.
July 18-19: AmericanStudying Watchmen: Student Perspectives: A special post sharing a handful of student responses to both the graphic novel and show!
July 20: Historical Fictions: An Overview: Inspired by my summer grad class, a historical fiction series kicks off with how I’d define the genre, and how it differs from period fiction.
July 21: Historical Fictions: Kindred: The series continues with its first highlighted novel, Octavia Butler’s stunning speculative historical fiction.
July 22: Historical Fictions: Cloudsplitter: The next highlight is Russell Banks’ historical novel of John Brown through his son’s eyes, as the series reads on.
July 23: Historical Fictions: James Michener and Hawaii: James Michener’s mammoth, sweeping, deeply research historical novels are the week’s next highlight.
July 24: Historical Fictions: Five More Novels: From Doctorow to Eugenides, five more historical novel highlights round off the week’s series.
July 25-26: Crowd-sourced Historical Fictions: But wait, there’s more! A lot more, in one of the most full and multi-vocal crowd-sourced posts in my blog’s 9.5 year history.
July 27: Great Movie Speeches: Remember the Titans: A series on great film speeches kicks off with the sports speech that shouldn’t work, and why it does.
July 28: Great Movie Speeches: Wall Street: The series continues with the truth at the heart of a famous 80s speech, and how it frustratingly foreshadows the age of Trump nonetheless.
July 29: Great Movie Speeches: Mr. Smith Goes to Washington: The speech that illustrates why the concept of “Capra-esque” misses much of the director’s vision, as the series orates on.
July 30: Great Movie Speeches: Jaws: The reason for the week’s series, the 75th anniversary of the U.S.S. Indianapolis sinking and the stunning speech through which I learned about that history.
July 31: Great Movie Speeches: The American President: The series concludes with three of the many great lines from one of our best political speeches (even though it’s fictional!).
Next series starts Monday,
PS. Topics you’d like to see covered in this space? Guest Posts you’d like to contribute? Lemme know!