Arch Dalrymple III Department of History

University of Mississippi

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Thinking about Law School?

Posted on: February 8th, 2018 by atwitty

History majors and minors are invited to join the Arch Dalrymple III Department of History for a visit to the University of Mississippi Law School, where they’ll enjoy a free pizza lunch and learn about the process of applying to law school and the nature of legal education at an event specially planned for them.

This event will take place Thursday, February 22 at 12:30 PM in Room 1115 at the University of Mississippi Law School. Reserve your spot–and your pizza!–by RSVPing to Professor Anne Twitty at atwitty@olemiss.edu

History Faculty to Participate in 8th Annual MLK Day Commemoration

Posted on: January 22nd, 2018 by atwitty

The University of Mississippi Law School will host its eighth annual MLK Day commemoration, which celebrates the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., on Wednesday, January 31, 2018 from 12:30 to 1:45 P.M. in Weems Auditorium.

This year’s panel will focus on slavery and its connections to the legacy of Dr. King. Panelists include two members of the University of Mississippi Slavery Research Group, associate professor of history Anne Twitty and associate professor of sociology Jeff Jackson, and instructor of English Jennie Lightweis-Goff, whose work focuses on slavery, race, and southern culture. The panel will be moderated by associate professor of history Marc Lerner.

Professor April Holm’s New Book

Posted on: January 2nd, 2018 by atwitty

A Kingdom Divided: Evangelicals, Loyalty, and Sectionalism in the Civil War Era

Louisiana State University Press, 2017

A Kingdom Divided uncovers how evangelical Christians in the border states influenced debates about slavery, morality, and politics from the 1830s to the 1890s. Using little-studied events and surprising incidents from the region, April E. Holm argues that evangelicals on the border powerfully shaped the regional structure of American religion in the Civil War era.

In the decades before the Civil War, the three largest evangelical denominations diverged sharply over the sinfulness of slavery. This division generated tremendous local conflict in the border region, where individual churches had to define themselves as being either northern or southern. In response, many border evangelicals drew upon the “doctrine of spirituality,” which dictated that churches should abstain from all political debate. Proponents of this doctrine defined slavery as a purely political issue, rather than a moral one, and the wartime arrival of secular authorities who demanded loyalty to the Union only intensified this commitment to “spirituality.” Holm contends that these churches’ insistence that politics and religion were separate spheres was instrumental in the development of the ideal of the nonpolitical southern church. After the Civil War, southern churches adopted both the disaffected churches from border states and their doctrine of spirituality, claiming it as their own and using it to supply a theological basis for remaining divided after the abolition of slavery. By the late nineteenth century, evangelicals were more sectionally divided than they had been at war’s end.

In A Kingdom Divided, Holm provides the first analysis of the crucial role of churches in border states in shaping antebellum divisions in the major evangelical denominations, in navigating the relationship between church and the federal government, and in rewriting denominational histories to forestall reunion in the churches. Offering a new perspective on nineteenth-century sectionalism, it highlights how religion, morality, and politics interacted—often in unexpected ways—in a time of political crisis and war.

Ph.D. Candidate Phil Baltuskonis Wins Two Outside Fellowships

Posted on: December 1st, 2017 by atwitty

Arch Dalrymple III Department of History Ph.D. candidate Phil Baltuskonis has won two external grants that will fund research on his dissertation, which explores the role of ideas in shaping the social movements that led individuals in Spanish America to reject the Spanish crown and explore ideas of independence.

In January 2018, Baltuskonis will travel to the Lily Library in Bloomington, Indiana on a Mendel Fellowship, which is designed to support research by scholars from around the world in areas of particular interest to the Mendel family, including the history of the Spanish Colonial Empire, Latin American independence movements, European expansion in the Americas, and voyages, travels and exploration. Baltuskonis’s research in Bloomington will center on the correspondence among members of the eighteenth century Royal Botanical Expedition to New Granada.

After completing this trip, Baltuskonis will travel to Seville and Madrid with support from the University of Mississippi graduate school and the Arch Dalrymple III Department of History. There he will undertake research in the colonial archives. Finally, a visiting Ph.D. fellowship from the Universidad del Rosario will bring Baltuskonis to Bogotá, Colombia. The archives in Bogotá will allow him to explore the impact that people connected to the leaders in and around the city had on the creation of a new Latin American state.

Baltuskonis’s dissertation, “Hesitant Independence in Spanish America: Science, Patronage, and the Power of Community,” examines the social networks created by the alumni of the Colegio del Rosario, a private university founded in Bogotá in 1653, and the members of the Botanical Expedition to New Granada (present-day Colombia), as well as their connection to the revolutions in Spanish America during the late colonial period. His work is being supervised by Douglass Sullivan-González.

Elizabeth Payne Receives Lifetime Merit Award

Posted on: November 15th, 2017 by atwitty

At the 2017 meeting of the Southern Historical Association, Professor Elizabeth Payne was recognized with an award for “extraordinary service” to the Southern Association for Women Historians (SAWH). Organized in 1970, the SAWH meets annually and has over 700 members. It strives to stimulate interest in the study of Southern and women’s history as well to advance the status of women historians.

Payne first joined the SAWH in 1985 when she moved to the University of Arkansas history department. She has continued to be an active member ever since. In particular, the award highlighted her leadership in organizing a mentoring program for graduate students and service on multiple committees. Two other historians, Professor Jacqueline Dowd Hall of the University of North Carolina and Professor Darlene Clark Hine of Northwestern University, also received the lifetime merit awards.

Marc Lerner Named 2017 Humanities Teacher of the Year

Posted on: October 30th, 2017 by atwitty

Marc Lerner, associate professor of history at the University of Mississippi, will give the 2017 Humanities Teacher of the Year Lecture on a popular figure in folklore at 7 p.m. November 6 in the Bondurant Hall auditorium.

Lerner will discuss “The International William Tell: Highlighting Popular Culture in a Transatlantic World,” focusing on his research about the Swiss folk hero. The lecture is free and open to the public.

This year’s Humanities Teacher of the Year said he was shocked when he heard that he won the award, which is sponsored by the UM College of Liberal Arts and the Mississippi Humanities Council.

“I am deeply touched that the committee thought I was worthy of the honor,” Lerner said. “I know that there are many instructors who work very hard for their students and who deserve the recognition for doing a great job in the classroom.

“It is gratifying to be around such hard-working and supportive colleagues, who are great teachers and conduct such stimulating research. We are all fortunate to be inspired by the bright and enthusiastic students at this university.”

Lerner, who has been teaching at Ole Miss since 2005, holds a bachelor’s degree in history from the University of Chicago and a doctorate in history from Columbia University.

He regularly teaches courses on the Enlightenment, the French Revolution, the Age of Revolution and on nationalism. His research interests are focused on revolutionary Europe in a comparative perspective, republicanism and the shift to a modern political world, as well as Tell, among other topics.

Lerner has been a star teacher for many years, said Donald Dyer, associate dean for faculty and academic affairs in the College of Liberal Arts.

“He is very deserving of the recognition and the opportunity to give the 2017 lecture,” Dyer said. “His colleagues and his students agree that he is a compassionate, caring and engaging teacher of history and other topics. He has been teaching classes in the Honors College for several years as well.

“The college is proud of his skills and his teaching acumen, and he is highly deserving of the Mississippi Humanities Council Award.”

The William Tell story came to European prominence in the late 15th century as a foundational legend that sought to explain the origins of Swiss liberty. The different versions of the story agreed on some fundamental elements: Tell was a virtuous citizen of Canton Uri who was oppressed by the tyrannical Gessler after refusing to bow down before the symbols of Gessler’s authority.

Gessler then capriciously forced Tell to shoot an apple off his own son’s head.

“Ultimately, Gessler paid the price for his tyranny as Tell’s shot led to the independence of the Swiss Cantons and Gessler’s death,” Lerner said. “There was no agreement, however, on some other important elements of the story: Did Tell lead the revolt? Did he take part in the foundational oath? Was Gessler local or imposed by an outside power?”

Most often, the Tell story broke down into one of two categories, either supporting the elite leadership of the Swiss republics or arguing for more popular input into politics. Either message was easily extended beyond the Alps: Tell acted in defense of his family against the foreign tyrant and continued to respect the authority of the local elite, or he was a popular revolutionary who planned an insurrection to overthrow aristocratic rule.

During this period of revolutionary transformation, the figure of Tell evolved into a proxy in an ongoing battle between those who saw true liberty as self-rule, free from the intervention of foreigners, and those who saw liberty as an egalitarian principle.

Lerner’s lecture is an extension of his ongoing research about the international forms of Tell’s story to better understand a global Age of Revolutions from 1750 to 1850 through studying cultural productions. The story was used and manipulated by a variety of participants and he can track this story of liberty into all corners of the Revolutionary world, Lerner said.

“The development of a wider international perspective allows us to look more deeply at the Revolutionary period itself and the globalized world it created,” Lerner said. “Too often, historians observe fundamental revolutionary processes only in a single country.

“The Age of Revolution did not start and stop in Paris or Philadelphia; rather it was a transnational phenomenon. Revolutionary and counterrevolutionary ideals, principles and problems were not bound by national borders.”

Each October, the Mississippi Humanities Council honors outstanding humanities instructors at state institutions for higher learning as part of National Arts and Humanities Month. College presidents or academic deans nominate professors for consideration, based on the excellence of their humanities work in the classroom.

Each nominee receives a cash award from the Mississippi Humanities Council and is asked to prepare and deliver a public lecture on a humanities subject during October or November.

Story by Michael Newsom

Jessica Wilkerson Wins Article Prize

Posted on: September 13th, 2017 by atwitty

The Southern Association for Women Historians has awarded Jessica Wilkerson, Assistant Professor of History and Southern Studies, the 2017 A. Elizabeth Taylor Prize, which is given annually for the best article on women’s history published during the preceding calendar year.

Wilkerson’s winning article, “The Company Owns the Mine but They Don’t Own Us: Feminist Critiques of Capitalism in the Coalfields of Kentucky in the 1970s,” appeared in Gender & History last March. It examined women’s involvement in the Brookside Mine strike of 1974, which captivated US audiences and provided women with an unprecedented public platform to challenge the class and gender system undergirding coalfield capitalism. During the strike, Wilkerson shows, female kin of miners in Harlan County, Kentucky, started a club to support striking miners and their families and to organize picket lines and were joined by women from across the region and country.

With the strike as their foundation these women generated a women’s movement that revealed the specific ways class and gender inequality shaped their lives, defined by the heavy-duty care work characteristic of the coalfields. The Brookside women’s support of striking miners, Wilkerson demonstrates, was fundamentally about gendered class inequality: the denigration of working-class, female caregivers alongside the devaluing of men’s labour. Using collective memory and individual experience as their interpretive devices, her article reveals how the Brookside women forged a class-conscious feminism that exposed the traumas of coalfield capitalism, shone a light on women’s unpaid care work (one of the foundations of corporate capitalism), and destabilized the gender and class hierarchies that defined coalfield communities.

2017 Center for Civil War Research Conference to Take Place in September

Posted on: September 12th, 2017 by atwitty

The Center for Civil War Research and the Arch Dalrymple III Department of History present the eleventh annual Conference on the Civil War to be held September 29 and 30 in Oxford, Mississippi. The theme of this year’s conference is “Borders, Boundaries, and Lines in the Civil War” and will include work that explores both literal and figurative boundaries, including the experiences of border states, the boundaries between slavery and freedom, border patrols, racial boundaries, and battle lines.

The keynote address will be given by Dr. Christopher Phillips of the University of Cincinnati, author of The Rivers Ran Backward: The Civil War and the Remaking of the American Middle Border, which was the winner of the 2017 Tom Watson Brown Book Award. Phillips will speak on “Southern Cross, North Star: The Cultural Politics of Race and Irreconciliation on the Post-Civil War Middle Border” on Friday, September 29 at 6:30 p.m. in 107 Croft Institute. This event is free and open to the public.

The 2017 Wiley-Silver Prize for Best First Book in Civil War History will also be awarded at the conference.

A complete schedule of events will available soon at the Center for Civil War Research site.

Nicolas Trépanier awarded European Institutes for Advanced Study Fellowship

Posted on: September 7th, 2017 by atwitty

Nicolas Trépanier, associate professor in the University of Mississippi’s Arch Dalrymple III Department of History, has received a yearlong research fellowship at the Netherlands Institute for Advanced Study in Amsterdam for the 2017-2018 academic year.

Trépanier was awarded the European Institutes for Advanced Study fellowship, which brings together scholars in a variety of disciplines, ranging from neurology to art history and from journalism to philosophy. Their projects are not connected to one other, but the fellows are expected to interact.

The idea behind the EURIAS model is that creative thinkers will benefit from being exposed to other creative thinkers in fields that are unfamiliar to them.

Trépanier says he’s grateful to EURIAS for the opportunity to collaborate with such an esteemed group.

“Spending a year at NIAS will allow me to concentrate on that research on a full-time basis, so it’s likely to be very important in the advancement of my research career,” Trépanier said. “It will also allow me to work with a few archaeologists I know in the Netherlands, which is also a precious opportunity because historians in my field rarely engage in such collaborations.”

EURIAS’ fellowship program is part of the Network of European Institutes for Advanced Study, which brings together 22 institutes across Europe. Within the network, more than 500 researchers are hosted every year for up to one full academic year, with the goal of creating international and multidisciplinary learning communities.

Trépanier holds a doctorate in Middle Eastern studies and History from Harvard University. His first book, Foodways and Daily Life in Medieval Anatolia: A New Social History, explores the daily experiences of ordinary folk through the various parts that food played in their lives: from agricultural production to religious fasting and from commercial exchanges to meal schedules.

The fellowship will give him a chance to work on a second book, also focused on Anatolia, in medieval Turkey. This work explores the idea of landscapes, how people living at that time perceived the territory around them and what were the differences in perception between travelers, political elites, peasants and others.

Trépanier is an exceptional scholar and teacher whose theoretical innovation and productivity in research places him within the top tier of an already accomplished University of Mississippi faculty, said Noell Wilson, interim chair and associate professor of history and international studies.

“His cross-disciplinary study of landscape in medieval Anatolia engages projects of colleagues not only within his home discipline of history, but in archaeology and the broader digital humanities,” Wilson said. “We are thrilled to see international recognition for his work beyond the U.S. academy, and the broader department will benefit from Professor Trépanier’s role as an intellectual bridge between Oxford and European scholars.”

Native American Scholar David Nichols to Lecture on Chickasaw Nation

Posted on: August 28th, 2017 by atwitty

David Nichols, Professor of History at Indiana State University, will give a talk entitled “Between a Dollar and a Pistaroon: Currency, Commensurability, and Conspicuous Consumption in the Chickasaw Nation” on Wednesday, September 13 at 5:30 pm in 515 Lamar Hall.

Professor Nichols received his bachelor’s degree from Harvard University and his Master’s and Doctoral degrees from the University of Kentucky. He joined the faculty at Indiana State University in 2004 and became an associate professor in 2010.

His specialty is early America, with a particular interest in Native American history during the Revolutionary and early national era. He is the author of Red Gentlemen & White Savages: Indians, Federalists, and the Search for Order on the Early American Frontier (University of Virginia Press, 2008), and Engines of Diplomacy: Indian Trading Factories and the Negotiation of American Empire (University of North Carolina Press, 2016). He is currently working on a short history of the Great Lakes Indians and a study of economic change among the Chickasaws.