History Carnival 151

Welcome to the History Carnival for November 2015. It’s more than five years since I last hosted the Carnival and nearly 11 years since I first hosted it. In fact, I managed to miss its 10th anniversary in January altogether. So, this is a rather belated opportunity to reflect on the last decade-and-a-bit of the history blogosphere. Other history-related blog carnivals have come and gone since then; many of the blogs and bloggers of 2005 and even of 2010 are now inactive or moved away or defunct. We used to lament the passing of history blogs; and yet it seems to me now that there is something cyclical in their very nature. They reflect the changing needs and priorities of their authors; the blog that endures has been the exception.

But is that changing? There is a whole new history blogosphere that is institutionally approved, sometimes even mandated, which can feel quite odd to those of us who remember “Ivan Tribble” (google it, and marvel). The motives behind these developments may be viewed by older blogging curmudgeons like me with a degree of cynicism (at least in the UK where our academic leaders’ enthusiasm for “impact” frequently has more to do with generating REF case studies and funding imperatives than the joy of communicating research to the great unwashed masses). But nonetheless, blogging has gained a new degree of  legitimacy and with it, new cohorts of academic bloggers of greatly varying shades of enthusiasm.

And I think one key trend in this context has been the rise of the group blog, including the project blog, the departmental/faculty blog, the scholarly society or journal blog, and the less institutional subject blog. Group blogs are far from new, of course; and, conversely, even though it has been supplanted somewhat by Facebook and Twitter et al, the personal academic blog is still going strong (and has yet to be tamed by the bureaucrats). But there is something a bit different about many of these younger group blogs. The very fine Notches blog, on the history of sexuality, may typify the genre: a small core of editors, a large floating circle of guest bloggers, and a tight academic focus. (Compare this to something like Crooked Timber: more mixed and informal content, but I think a much stronger group identity.) As such, they provide new opportunities for academics who don’t want to blog regularly, and may well have a longer lifespan than the average personal blog and even the older style group blog.

I discovered some blogs that were new to me in the course of hosting this edition, as well as revisiting some very old friends, and I hope there will be new finds for readers too. I’m grateful to those who sent nominations, and to all who share their knowledge and ideas with us via blogs, of whatever kind.

And so, enough preambling!

Things That Go Bump In The Night (source: British Library)

Things That Go Bump In The Night (source: British Library)

History beyond the Academy

Two cracking posts from the History Matters blog on a favourite topic of mine, the relationship between history and historical fiction: Historical fiction and alternative truths and Historical Fiction and Fictional History.

Online Journalism Blog: How The Telegraph liveblogs historical anniversaries

Reluctant Internationalists explore connections between past and present, history and policy: Mnemonic battles on 23 October: the 1956 revolution and the refugee crisis in political discourse

Do You Have a Cherokee in Your Family Tree? Gregory Smithers at HNN examines why many Americans believe they do, even when it flies in the face of the facts.

Digital History

Can we date revolutions in the history of literature and music? Ted Underwood looks at some big claims and crunches a few numbers of his own.

At dh+lib, Thomas Padilla and Matthew Lincoln discuss the potential of Data-Driven Art History: Framing, Adapting, Documenting

Edwired reflects on a decade of teaching digital history: Back to the Future

Crime, Rebellion and Punishment

At the many-headed monster, Mark Hailwood on 500 years of rebelliousness in Cornwall and the south-west of England: West Country Rebels

The Prosecution Project blog: Alcohol abuse and criminal offending

A family historian explores her own ancestors’ experiences in the history of riot and popular protest (Victorian Supersleuth): My Relative was a Swing Rioter

Juvenile offenders transported to Australia as ‘apprentices’ in the mid-19th century (Carceral Archipelago): Juvenile Immigrants: An Experiment in Convict Labour?

David Churchill in the Social History journal blog traces the changing relationship between social historians and criminologists over the last half century in Rediscovering Historical Criminology

Black History

October was Black History Month in the UK and there has been some great blogging to mark the event.

The University of Nottingham’s UoN Blogs posted an extensive series of posts, including Britain’s Forgotten Slave Owners and Going global: restoring agency to black history

Launching the new Runaway Slaves in Britain project: Runaway Slaves

National Museums Liverpool: Forgotten? Black Soldiers in the Battle of Waterloo

Ryan Hanley reconsiders his role as a history of slavery and abolition at the RHS blog.

At the Notches blog, on using Tumblr in teaching the history of gender, race and empire: Teaching with Tumblr: Building a Digital Archive of Gender, Race & Empire

Women’s History

October saw the release of the film Suffragette, which got plenty of attention from the media and film critics.

History Today: Suffragette: Film Review

At Woman and Her Sphere, a more historical take in one of a series of Suffrage Stories: ‘Shooting Suffrage’: Films That Suffrage Activists Would Have Seen

Ana Stevenson critiqued ongoing analogies comparing suffragettes to slaves: The suffragettes were rebels, certainly, but not slaves

At the many-headed monster, Amanda Herbert provided us with a History of Femininities Reading List.

It’s harvest time! Women’s Work in Early Modern England: Workers of the Week: Autumnal Gatherers and Cider Makers

Georgian Gentleman introduces us to Hester Bateman, a brilliant silversmith, clever in business

Material Bodies

Yvonne Seale discusses the intricacies and significance of medieval nuns’ clothing: Clothes Make the Premonstratensian Sister

Sarah E. Bond, a new discovery for me, is that rare thing: an ancient history blogger. I could have chosen one of several splendid recent posts, but went with this one: Code Switching: Courtesans, Clothing, and Crossdressing in Antiquity

JHI Blog brings us A Case of Androgynous Gender-Bending in Early Modern Radical Religion

Joanne Begiato: How Stuff Helps Make a Man

I love pies. And Doing History in Public is Thinking with pies (mince pies, to be exact). Food for body and mind. Yum.

At Airminded, one of those very old friends: The peril in the air. Not the usual peril in the air, though: this is about airborne germs and lurid Edwardian advertising.

Conciatore on a late 16th-century book of recipes, including some you definitely don’t want to try: The Duke’s Mouthwash

Magic and Mysteries

Medieval Manuscripts Blog:Things That Go Bump in the Night

Public Domain Review: The Key of Hell: an 18th-Century Manual on Black Magic

Enchanted Histories: Malleus Maleficarum

streets of salem: Turnip Ghosts

Turbulent Priests: How to deal with a vampire attack

Art and Architecture, Mainly: Lasseter’s Gold: fool’s errand or con artistry?

Farewells

A tribute to Lisa Jardine by Kate Maltby; and see the latest Whewell’s Gazette

John Bossy

Sheldon Wolin

David Cesarini

In addition, although this news is a few months old, I didn’t want to end without a mention of Ralph Luker, who died in August. He will be an unfamiliar name to many newer bloggers (he retired from blogging a few years ago), but he was a pioneer in, and advocate for, history blogging who supported the History Carnival from its earliest infancy.

The Future

Will the History Carnival still be around in another 10 years? I have no idea, but I can tell you that the next edition will be at Hatful of History on 1 December. Usual nomination form.

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6 Responses to History Carnival 151

  1. thonyc says:

    Thanks for the Whewell’s Gazette link ;))

  2. daseger says:

    Honored to be included in such august company!

  3. historyagain says:

    Fantastic! I’ve been looking for the best history blogs and here they are in one place, with critique! Thank you so much.

  4. Pingback: Carnival — 10/28 – 11/03/2015 | Sorting out Science

  5. Georgian Gentleman’s post on Hester Bateman is terrific. I love History of the Decorative Arts in general, and am passionate about gold and silver art in particular, but I may not have found this post myself.

  6. Pingback: Hatful of History to host History Carnival for Dec 2015: Nominate now! | Hatful of History

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