SMU Daily Campus Originally Posted: October 11, 2018 Most days, you can find Dr. Jeffrey Engel in his office surrounded by history tomes. The Director of the SMU Center for Presidential History at SMU has filled his office with the work presidential historians, including his own. Dr. Engel was attracted to this area of study because he believes in the concept of narrative history. That is, an idea that history should be told in a form where it is accessible to people from all walks of life. “I remember feeling a profound sense of shame because a proper human should know events from the past,” Dr. Engel said, while reflecting on a moment from his childhood that reinforced his desire to study and make a [...]
Wall Street Journal Originally Posted: September 20, 2018 Mr. Andrew Graybill is the chair of the history department and co-director of the William P. Clements Center for Southwest Studies at Southern Methodist University. In 1990, United Airlines was in search of a home for its new repair center. Dazzled by the prospect of 8,000 new jobs and $700 million in revenue, Oklahoma City launched an aggressive campaign to lure the facility. To help fund some of the incentives used to tempt the company, residents agreed to a $120 million tax hike. Boosters took out an ad on a billboard outside United’s Chicago headquarters imploring the airline to “Come Fly the Friendly Skies of Oklahoma City.” But in the end Indianapolis won the day. As Sam [...]
Event: Oct. 4, Asian Studies & William P. Clements Department of History Present a Scott-Hawkins Lecture: “The Historian’s Task in the Anthropocene” by Julia A. Thomas
Event Date: 10/04/2018 Location: FOSC 152 Time: 5pm Contact: email@example.com If "the Anthropocene" suggests a rupture of the Earth System, producing a future which looks nothing like our past, what is the role of historians in this predicament? Thomas addresses this question in three ways. Further, using the example of early modern Japan, she proposes a new form of critical history as we move from modernity’s promise of freedom and abundance to the more modest goal of sustainability with decency.
Dallas Morning News Originally Posted: September 12, 2018 The Bipartisan Policy Center says results of a survey to be released Friday support the view that Texas and its historic, pragmatic views on immigration are key to pushing for future reform. As the national debate over immigration rages on, conservative-leaning Texas is seen as an important bellwether state given its growing diversity, 1,000-mile border with Mexico and closeness to hot button topics ranging from sanctuary cities, the border wall, DACA to the separation of families entering the U.S. And those issues are complicated by a growing economy dependent on its immigrant labor force. The Washington-based Bipartisan Policy Center think tank said results from the nationwide survey, conducted in conjunction with Southern Methodist University, show that, [...]
A new survey reveals that not only do business executives value college, they want students with skills associated with the liberal arts.
Inside Higher Ed Originally Posted: August 28, 2018 Public May Not Trust Higher Ed, but Employers Do A new survey reveals that not only do business executives value college, they want students with skills associated with the liberal arts. Though public support for higher education seems to be waning, this skepticism doesn’t appear to extend to potential employers, who say they still have faith in colleges and universities, according to a new survey conducted on behalf of the Association of American Colleges & Universities. But while executives and hiring managers believe that institutions are teaching graduates the skills needed for entry-level jobs, they reported that students usually aren’t ready to be promoted. AAC&U commissioned the Washington, D.C.-based Hart Research Associates to survey two groups: 500 or so business [...]
Former Clements Fellow Andrew Torget prepares to break a Guinness World Record in teaching the longest lesson
Chronicle of Higher Education Originally Posted: July 26, 2018 On August 24 at 9 a.m., Andrew Torget will take the podium in a University of North Texas auditorium, clad in a suit and armed with 500 pages of notes. Forty-five students will be seated in front of him, notebooks — no laptops! — at the ready. He’ll open his notes, clear his throat, and begin his lecture. If he’s going to successfully teach the longest recorded history class ever, he won’t be able to stop, aside from occasional brief breaks, for the next 30 hours. At least 10 of his students will have to stick it out, too. Torget, an associate professor of history at North Texas, is gunning for an official Guinness World Record — for [...]
The Trump administration is right about the problem at the border. But its ‘solutions’ would just make things worse.
Washington Post Originally Posted: June 22, 2018 By: Mary E. Mendoza, assistant professor of history and Latinx studies at Penn State University and the David J. Weber Fellow for Study of Southwestern America at the Clements Center for Southwest Studies at Southern Methodist University. As immigration policy again dominates the news, President Trump’s administration has resorted to creative justifications for its draconian policies, including demands for a border wall. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke might just have trotted out the most creative rationale, arguing: “It’s a national security issue, a national defense issue, it’s a humanitarian crisis, and oh, by the way, it’s an environmental crisis,” implying that a wall would help solve all of these problems. Perhaps Zinke is right about the broad dimensions of the [...]
CPH Postdoctoral Fellow Paul Renfro offers historical perspective on the crisis at the border for the Washington Post
Washington Post Originally Posted: June 19, 2019 The real reason we’re locking children in cages We don't think nonwhite children deserve the same protections as “innocent” white ones. By Paul M. Renfro. Renfro is a postdoctoral fellow at Southern Methodist University, and beginning in August 2018, he will be a Dean’s Postdoctoral Scholar in the department of history at Florida State University. Americans are horrified by images and stories coming from the southern border. The U.S. government is brutalizing children and families — keeping children in cages, separated from their parents — purportedly in the name of border security. As outrage has increased, the spotlight has heated up, spurring politicians to speak out and contemplate action. As shocking and aberrant as this saga might seem — [...]
Brian Franklin, History, pens article for Washington Post on the historic perils of pastors courting politicians
Washington Post Originally Posted: June 15, 2018 Evangelicals need less politicking, more soul-searching Partisan politics are costing evangelical churches their souls. Brian Franklin works at Southern Methodist University, where he is the associate director of the Center for Presidential History and adjunct lecturer in the department of history. The Southern Baptist Convention held its annual meeting in Dallas this week. The two-day conference featured religious speakers from across the country, but the two that elicited the largest response were not pastors but politicians: Vice President Pence and Gov. Greg Abbott (R-Tex.). Both Abbott and Pence used their time to their political advantage. Abbott began Tuesday morning with stories of faith and service, only to transition to culture-wars rhetoric: an invective against the secularist “onslaught against religious liberty” by “sacrilegious” [...]