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Article Topic: US History

Was there any historic truth to Disney’s Pirates of the Caribbean films?

Dan Lefebrve has a popular podcast — Based on a True Story — in which he asks an expert how well a given Hollywood film matched up to historical reality…. Read more »

Speaking on the battle to define America’s purpose via Maine Public radio

The United States stands on the brink of a collapse into authoritarianism and dissolution. If we’re to fight back, what are we fighting for? What holds us together? That’s a… Read more »

Speaking on the crisis in U.S. democracy, Freeport, Maine, Oct. 20

I’m speaking on the crisis in U.S. democracy, how we got here, why we’re so vulnerable, and what we can do to save the situation in Freeport, Maine on October… Read more »

Speaking on Maine’s historical odyssey; South Portland, Maine, Sept. 28

On September 28 at 6:30pm, I’ll be in South Portland talking about the backstory of Maine on the occasion of its Bicentennial: a harrowing and little understood saga of war… Read more »

A U.S. breakup would be a disaster, but if it happens expect an independent New England

Back when American Nations came out in 2011, a lot of august experts dismissed the warning in the epilogue that if we were unable to form better compromises between the… Read more »

Should we replace the U.S. National Anthem?

Over the July 4th weekend the Washington Post published my review of musicologist Mark Clague’s new book, O Say Can You Hear?: A Cultural Biography of The Star Spangled Banner, a book… Read more »

Reviewing David Hackett Fisher’s Albion’s Seed sequel in Washington Monthly

More than thirty years ago, Brandeis historian David Hackett Fischer resuscitated the effort to develop a historical narrative of the United States with a book called Albion’s Seed, a sweeping… Read more »

Talking with Clint Watts about U.S. nationhood, regional divides

Clint Watts, NBC security analyst and author of Messing With the Enemy, had me on his podcast, Selected Wisdom, this past week. We talked about how my experiences as a… Read more »

Presenting at Cornell IOPGA’s Summit on Democracy, NYC, May 24

  This coming Tuesday, Cornell’s Institute of Politics and Global Affairs in New York City is bringing together an array of prominent experts — including Reps. Adam Schiff (D-CA) and… Read more »

American Nations – Now in Chinese

I’m pleased to learn that American Nations: A History of the Eleven Rival Regional Cultures of North America has been available in Simplified Chinese translation in the world’s largest market… Read more »