Category Archives: Reflection

End of Semester Reflections

Another semester winds to an end. Looking back, how do I think it went? I continue to be thrilled with my online sections of Western Civ, both sprint and semester-length. I require so much more work from online students, its not … Continue reading

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Why did we choose to industrialize?

This Saturday, I had the great pleasure of participating in a book roundtable on Robert Sweeny’s Why Did We Choose to Industrialize? at the Social Science History Association conference in Chicago. Robert is an incredibly engaged and engaging scholar. We (Martin … Continue reading

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In defense of the college lecture

Finally! I decided to become an academic historian because of a brilliant lecturer and Bede scholar, Roger Ray. My whole career, I have attempted to emulate Roger and taken every opportunity to improve content, delivery, engagement, etc. I wrote about … Continue reading

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Our deadly species

While on vacation, I saw links to two article detailing our wonderful propensity to kill each other. Here in tabular form the deadliest conflicts in human history. http://ai.mee.nu/historys_bloodiest_wars_and_who_to_blame If cutsie Millennial websites are your thing, perhaps this article from American … Continue reading

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Research in the Holy Land

I have been back one week from a quick research trip to Jerusalem. As part of my work on Peasants & Jews, I needed to track down the records of East Fresian Jews who survived the Holocaust. As part of this, … Continue reading

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Reflections on the Agricultural Revolution

This past Thursday, I completed my umpteenth lecture on Peasant Life in early modern Europe. Because of changes in Miami University’s time schedule, my lecture period has moved from 70 minutes to 80 minutes. Somehow, despite more time, I felt this … Continue reading

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Research Update #3: What carries over into the classroom?

Every research trip I make, I go with a purpose and make a set of goals. Along the way, the list gets amended as some trails go cold and other possibilities open up. This trip, I accomplished what I set … Continue reading

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Tom Holland, Charlie Hebdo, and the history of Islam

On the way back from a conference in Glasgow, I picked up a copy of The New Statesman to read on the plane. The cover story concerned Tom Holland’s “In the Shadow of the Sword: The Birth of Islam and the … Continue reading

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Reflections on 2014

I am not big on year-in-review posts, but two trends emerged in 2014 that are worth reflecting upon. 1) What’s up in Eastern Europe? First a revolt against a pro-Russian kleptocrat in Ukraine, then the Russia seizure of Crimea and … Continue reading

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British Library debate on the First World War, 2/24/2014

On February 24, the British Library kicked off the centenary of the beginning of the Great War by sponsoring a debate. Participating were Gary Sheffield, Annika Mombauer, Dan Todman, and Neil Faulkner . "The First World War: The Debate" video now online at http://t.co/xmssUpjPZu /via … Continue reading

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Fernand Braudel speaks from the grave

Who says historians don’t have a sense of humor? This morning, I was scrolling down through the overnight Tweets and came across this: I've been looking into the causes of the #Ukraine crisis. Answer is obviously the grain trade with … Continue reading

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Some lessons on the revolutionary process

I do not view my courses – whether the traditional lecture classes nor the new online courses – as a podium to expound my political views. I disliked this as a student and now as an instructor frequently hear students … Continue reading

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Kiev, without comment

Blood on the steps of Kyiv's October Palace. pic.twitter.com/kSBGYhtyAL — Christopher Miller (@ChristopherJM) February 20, 2014 Makeshift #Euromaidan morgue at the Hotel #Ukraine. 50 protesters killed in last two days. Credit: @DavidMdzin pic.twitter.com/4fBGTS70so — Jack Stubbs (@jc_stubbs) February 20, 2014

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The historical importance of the events in Kiev

Walter Russel Mead, whose opinions I frequently (but not always) share, offers an interesting take on the events in Maidan Square. Kiev Violence Leaves 13 Dead. How bad will things have to get to prompt a policy change from the … Continue reading

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While Kiev burns …

Every night when the Sochi Olympics come on (and the pederasts at NBC suck up to the dictator Putin), my wife and I wonder how long the demos in Ukraine will go on before that country’s mob boss president asks … Continue reading

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Annual Report Hell

Well, it’s finally done. The most distasteful part of my job. Writing the “annual report”. Oh yes, employees should be accountable for their actions. Public employees who live off the state teat especially. Why do I hate it so? Somewhere … Continue reading

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Moving on to Vienna

The Austrian imperial family, the Habsburgs, were traditionally buried in the crypt of the simple Capuchin Church in Vienna. When the imperial coffin was carried to the Church, the door was barred and a monk would ask, “Who seeks to … Continue reading

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The Loeb Classical Library now available online!

One of the pleasures of my undergraduate years was going to the library and pulling classical texts in the  Loeb Classical Library off the shelf. Well, the red volumes anyway. Loeb editions of Latin authors had red covers, those of … Continue reading

Posted in Greece, HST 121, Reflection, Resources, Rome, Teaching | Leave a comment

Walking Hadrian’s Wall with Google Street View

Dr. Christoph Pallaske of the Historisches Institut at the Universität zu Köln has developed the most interesting site (segu or selbstgesteuert entwickelnder geschichts-unterricht) that allows users to visit historical places using Google Street View. One very interesting example is this walk along … Continue reading

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Was James II the bad monarch his reputation makes out?

James II ascended to the throne on this day in 1685. An article in History Today, Maurice Ashley suggests that he doesn’t deserve his reputation. James II and VII acceded to the throne on this day in 1685. Why is he … Continue reading

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