History Carnival : 17th Edition

  • Date posted: 1 October 2005
  • Blog: The Apocalyptic Historian
  • Host: Lisa Roy Vox
  • Notes: For personal reasons Lisa decided to take down her blog not long after posting this edition of the carnival. This is an archived copy. Original formatting and presentation has not been preserved. I haven't checked or updated any of the links; some will be defunct.

The end of the world is at hand. Outside is chaos. You're trapped in an office with only a working internet connection to keep your mind occupied until the apocalypse. (1) How should you spend your time on the internet during these last few hours? I have a few suggestions.

Welcome to the 17th History Carnival.

As you wonder whether the end is actually at hand or if you are suffering from a delusion, consider Hugo Holbing's reflections on the history of mental illness and the usefulness of social constructivism in that history.

Many end-of-the-world movies feature characters searching for love in their last hours. Share in Claire's curiosity in Casanova at We Are Still Here as she contemplates Casanova's religious beliefs. Brandon at Siris answers questions that Claire raised about Casanova's beliefs in Casanova's Fideism.

Perhaps you're in a more spiritual mood now. Phil Harland explains his view on the misuse of the term 'forgery' in relation to early Christian literature at Religions of the Ancient Mediterranean Blog. Loren Rosson III responds to Harland at The Busybody in 'Lying and Deception in Authorship.'

Brad at The Weblog comments on theologian Thomas Altizer's A Theological Memoir, which recounts public theology in the 1960s. This review is followed by a guest post by Altizer himself - a thoughtful meditation on doing radical ethical theology at a time when he finds public theological language to be an obstacle to such work.

As a corollary to Altizer's contemplation on public theology, read Alonzo Hamby's remarks on historian Arthur Schlesinger, Jr., prompted by Schlesinger's own discussion about Niebuhr's influence on liberalism.

New Deal liberalism has been on the minds of politicians lately. Hiram Hover posts about the recent talk of New Deal analogies from politicians in deciding how to help the victims of Katrina in 'Responding to Katrina: Is History Any Guide?' Caleb McDaniel at Mode for Caleb draws a startling historical parallel between the 1793 yellow fever epidemic in Phildelphia and New Orleans after Katrina in 2005.

In a comparison of another of Bush's crises in the making, Jim MacDonald revisits the history of the Sepoy Rebellion with comments on the current situation in Iraq. Meanwhile Sepoy contributes to a recent attempt to compile the views Westerners have about Islam at Chapati Mystery.

How many times have humans believed the world was coming to an end? Natalie Bennett reviews a recent work on the Anabaptist takeover of Munster in 1534, when the belief in the impending apocalypse sent that city into chaos.

While the Anabaptists may have failed to remake society along theocratic lines, check out the conversation at Positive Liberty about the two revolutions that created new nationsóand always merit comparisons. Jonathan Rowe begins the discussion with 'The French and American Revolutions' Jason Kuznicki answers here and finishes by offering a virtual education in the French Revolution in 'A Classical Liberal Take on the French Revolution.'

Religious doomsayers in the West perpetually tend see moral decay in society. Nathaniel, provoked by the recent popularity of the film March of the Penguins with religious conservatives, writes about the historical connection between climate and morality at The Rhine River.

Sherman Dorn, meanwhile, tackles declension by addressing The New York Times's fear that Americans are becoming more and more ignorant of the past.

Even as the NYT worries about the state of historical literacy, peacay at BibliOdyssey perpetually reminds readers of the number of archival resources that are available online for research as in this post about emblem books (a form of moral exhortation in 15th and 16th century Europe).

At times there is nothing more inspiring for a student of history than visiting a place with a deep sense of history. MAHARAJADHIRAJ (posting from New Delhi) ponders the somewhat mysterious history of Lion's Orbit, a building situated in Old Fort, also Purana Qila, at Bodhi Shoppers' Guide. At Bala-graphy, balaji provides pictures and history of the temple, Gangai Konda Cholapuram in the city of Chennai in Tamil Nadu, after a recent visit.

Right now we all can watch a historian at work - discovering a new document, disclosing it to his peers, and weighing its import - as Greg James Robinson continues to post about his recent find in the Library of Congress of a memo from Assistant Secretary of War John McCloy to Undersecretary of War Robert Patterson from 1942. Eric Muller at Is That Legal? judges the impact of the newly discovered memo on Michelle Malkin's Ever-Shrinking Defense of Racial Internment.

Of course in the US at least, more parents worry about their children's science education than their history education. Sylwester Ratowt reminds us of the scientific theories that have been discarded in this post about the history of the 'hollow earth theory' at Copernicus Sashimi.

Despite the wishes of many ambitious parents, modern society simply no longer produces 'Renaissance men' or 'women' for that matter, who can converse equally well on history or science. At Giornale Nuovo, Mr. H. enlightens us about Athanasius Kircher, a 17th century Jesuit scholar, perhaps the last of the 'Renaissance men.'

After this last read, you are startled by a loud noise at the door. A friend bursts in and tells you that a solution has been foundóthe end of the world has been put off for another day. After considering your options, you finally decide you will write a best-selling history of this recent chaotic period. You might want to finish off your reading with Scott Eric Kaufman's post on 'bovarysme' or self-deception with corresponding examples in literature and history.

Many thanks to Sharon Howard, Manan Ahmed, and Ralph Luker for their input.

The next History Carnival will be hosted by Scott Eric Kaufman at Acephalous on 15 October. Email your nominations to scotterickaufman [at] gmail.com or acephalous [at] gmail.com


1. Really, are fictional apocalyptic scenarios any more preposterous?