Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Military history kicked off campus

National Review magazine reports:
Right now, for all intents and purposes, military history in Madison is dead. It's dead at many other top colleges and universities as well. Where it isn't dead and buried, it's either dying or under siege. Although military history remains incredibly popular among students who fill lecture halls to learn about Saratoga and Iwo Jima and among readers who buy piles of books on Gettysburg and D-Day, on campus it's making a last stand against the shock troops of political correctness. "Pretty soon, it may become virtually impossible to find military-history professors who study war with the aim of understanding why one side won and the other side lost", says Frederick Kagan, a resident scholar at the American Enterprise Institute who taught at West Point for ten years.
Fredric Smoler comments:
This is not news. Seven or so years ago I heard the excellent military historian John Lynn give a seminar at St. John's College, Cambridge, reporting on the disappearance of his field within the academy. The audience, professional historians and their graduate students, did not seem particularly alarmed about the prospect ...
Hmmm. I'll have to get my military history from the History Channel. I thought that historians were preoccupied with war, but I guess that it is the opposite.

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