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The Organization of American Historians and the Writing and Teaching of American History$
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Richard S. Kirkendall

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780199790562

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199790562.001.0001

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The OAH in Troublesome Times, 1980–2000

The OAH in Troublesome Times, 1980–2000

Chapter:
(p.49) 4 The OAH in Troublesome Times, 1980–2000
Source:
The Organization of American Historians and the Writing and Teaching of American History
Author(s):

Arnita A. Jones

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199790562.003.0004

This chapter discusses the difficulties faced by the Organization of American Historians (OAH) from 1980–2000. K-12 teaching, community colleges, the effort to improve the teaching of American history at all levels all became focal points for the OAH in these years. Simultaneously, internationalization became a primary concern, with David Thelen and Tom Bender providing decisive leadership in broadening the outreach of the OAH to the historians of America who lived in other countries and cultures. The “culture wars” of the 1990s made casualties of historians who had carefully worked on developing new standards for helping to teach history in the nation's schools; the historians were demeaning great men and exalting radical insurgencies, the critics said. In the meantime, museum exhibits like the Enola Gay came under attack for raising issues about the deliberations surrounding the decision to drop the atom bomb.

Keywords:   Organization of American Historians, American history, historical associations, culture wars, teaching, internationalization, Enola Gay

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