Tag Archives: identity

La Mulți Ani: A Tentative and Cautionary Birthday Wish for the USA

Yesterday, I read in a news article shared on Facebook that Disney has decided  to change the opening announcement at its Magic Kingdom fireworks show. The original greeting began, “Good evening, ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, dreamers of all … Continue reading

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Wonder: My New Year’s Resolution

Among the saddest lines in literature are the ones with which Nick Carraway describes his last glance at the sprawling estate on Long Island from which Gatsby watched the green light on Daisy’s dock: As the moon rose higher the … Continue reading

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What We Have Lost: Our Stories Make Us One

“Thanksgiving lessons jettison pilgrim hats, welcome truth” This headline from the Associated Press exploded inside my skull when I saw it three days ago, and in the dust that settled, I read an important lesson about what has been lost as … Continue reading

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Measuring Life in Semesters: I Am a Teacher

During what was probably the most important ten-plus years of my life, I was a member of a tiny parish in the Episcopal Church. Actually, it was so small that it was officially a mission, dependent upon the diocese for … Continue reading

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Fatty, Fatty, Two by Four

A fat child For the illumination of those who didn’t bear the sting of the taunt that inspired my title, let me quote: Fatty, fatty, two by four, Couldn’t get through the bathroom door, So she did it on the … Continue reading

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Yellow Fleas

The end of Reconstruction in 1877 gave birth to the Solid South. In both Presidential and state politics, the South retained its essentially single-party identity until the passage of the Civil Right Act in 1964. During that time, Southerners would … Continue reading

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Reconsidering the American Consensus–and Rehabilitating the 1950s

The Mering thesis and the roots of consensus history At the University of Arizona in the mid-1970s, John V. Mering inculcated his disciples with a devotion to the consensus historiography whose bedrock was The American Political Tradition: And the Men Who Made It … Continue reading

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Something Old

I still have the tattered Golden Book of Nursery Tales (1948) and Mother Goose Book of Nursery Rhymes (1953) presented to me at birth. At a time in my life when preserving the past evidently mattered less to me, I removed the … Continue reading

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Erasing History: The 2017 Version

“In February 1948, the Communist leader Klement Gottwald stepped out on to the balcony of a Baroque palace in Prague to harangue hundreds of thousands of citizens massed in Old Town Square. That was the great turning point in the … Continue reading

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Metatext: Memories in the Margins

Two weeks ago, on March 18, I saw The Sense of an Ending on the second day of its run at the Cameo Art House Theater in Fayetteville. In 2011–specifically, “Thanksgiving 2011, Lake Mattamuskeet” according to my notation on the flyleaf–I read … Continue reading

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