Ben Franklin’s World Episode 307: Michael Hattem, History and the American Revolution

This is a pretty good conversation between host Dr. Liz Covart and her guest, Professor Michael Hattem.

The episode description reads, “Using details from his book Past and Prologue: Politics and Memory in the American Revolution, Michael reveals the idea that history broadly and American History in particular are constructions; How Americans who lived in revolutionary and post-revolutionary America viewed and related to the past and history; And, how and why the United States’ first historians used the events of the past to fashion a new history and history culture for their new nation.”

The two discuss the following:

  • American History as a construction
  • Process of constructing history
  • History culture and the American Revolution
  • American transition from British subjects to American citizens
  • Cultural origins of the American Revolution
  • Glorious Revolution of 1688 and its importance to Americans
  • British Americans’ views of history during the 1760s
  • British Americans’ relationship with British history
  • British Americans’ status within the British Empire
  • The role diversity in early American cultures & identities played in shaping a distinctly American identity
  • Use of history and history culture to unify the people of the new United States
  • Use of art and museums to create a new American history culture
  • Role of state and regional histories in creating a national history culture
  • How early U.S. Historians dealt with slavery
  • Comparing Americans’ use of history with the use of history by other nations
  • Present-day American use of history for nationalistic ends

You can access the podcast episode here.

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