by Jeremi Suri The U.S. presidency is the most powerful office in the world, but it is set up to fail. And the power is the problem. Beginning as a small and uncertain position within a large and sprawling democracy, the presidency has grown over two centuries into a towering central command for global decisions […]
On March 23, 2017, the Institute for Historical Studies sponsored a roundtable on the landmark Supreme Court decision that struck down laws banning inter-racial marriage. Director of HIS, Seth Garfield, introduced the three panelists, who included Jacqueline Jones, Chair of the UT Austin History Department and well known to readers of Not Even Past, Kevin […]
We are especially pleased to post this essay by a long-time supporter of the UT Austin Department of History. Josiah M. Daniel III, of counsel at the international law firm Vinson & Elkins, LLP, received his J.D. from The University of Texas School of Law in 1978 and his master’s degree in History from UT in 1986. In […]
April 11, 2017 marks the fiftieth anniversary of a historical moment that is far more relevant today than we might wish: the discovery of hunger in the U.S. or, perhaps better put, the point in the late 1960s when severe poverty and life-threatening malnutrition in the world’s wealthiest nation suddenly soared into public view on the national political stage.
By Ian Goodale In an unpublished letter to the Soviet daily newspaper Izvestiia, Liudmila Chukovskaya wrote that “muteness has always been the support of despotism.” This quote is cited in the booklet, Czechoslovakia and Soviet Public, compiled by the Radio Liberty Committee in New York in August 1968 to analyze the coverage of the Soviet invasion of […]
By Isaac McQuistion Guns and America enjoy a symbiotic relationship, the one constantly evoked when you refer to the other. A Congressional Research Service report estimated that, in 2009, the number of firearms in the United States surpassed the number of people, 310 million compared to 306.8 million. That gap has continued to widen, and […]
The Price for their Pound of Flesh is the first book to explore the economic value of enslaved men, women, and children in the American domestic slave trade, from before they were born until after their death, in both public and private market transactions and appraisals.
By Guy Raffa “We breathe freer. The country will be saved.” Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s response to the reelection of Abraham Lincoln in 1864 is a timely reminder of how, while they all matter, some presidential elections matter much more than others. Five years earlier Longfellow was one of many who believed the time for peace […]
By Augusta Dell’Omo When President Lyndon B. Johnson called Thurgood Marshall to offer him the position of Solicitor General of the United States, Johnson reiterated his commitment to doing the job that Abraham Lincoln started by “going all the way” on civil rights, but he warned Marshall that the appointment would cause the Senate to […]
By Roy Doron On November 19, 2016, President Barack Obama, speaking on the transition of power to Donald Trump said “once you’re in the Oval Office … that has a way of shaping … and in some cases modifying your thinking.” The 2016 election will undoubtedly be remembered as one of the most unconventional and […]