View freely available titles: All this is not to say that FitzGerald finds no relief from the mediocrity underlying old and new history schoolbooks.
The books sound and look different, too. This is why she says that textbooks increasingly portray the United States in a critical light. Usually, as she shows, these perspectives are those of women and especially of people of color. In current textbooks, the word "progress" has become "change," and terms like "fatherland" and "founding fathers" are not to be found.
According to Frances FitzGerald, in her recent analysis of nineteenth- and twentieth-century history texts, these works have variously tucked away unpleasantries and wrapped up with high-minded moralizing the facts and figures that make up our American heritage. Do people of color, whose history has been underrepresented in our textbooks, take a negative view of the way that history is changing?
What has not changed throughout all the repackagings the American past has endured in the textbooks, FitzGerald tells us, is the regrettable mediocrity inherent in the conception of these texts. Ultimately, Fitzgerald is correct inasmuch as what she calls "perfect objectivity" is unattainable, and each generation of historians, whose work filters into textbooks, will view history through a lens somewhat colored by their own contemporary concerns.
FitzGerald likens the physical appearance of new history books to Architectural Digest or Vogue. Columbus has been superseded by such social reformers as Jacob Riis and William Lloyd Garrison, and once-heralded military generals have faded away as black Americans, ethnic minorities, and women emerge in the newer tellings of American history.
They and other powerful Americans are never credited with serious thinking. Fitzgerald believes, as she says elsewhere in this essay, that "we hope our history will not change. Even the recorded facts have changed: The anecdotal style of the nineteenth century gave way in the s to a telegraphic style that conveyed a new tone of restraint and spurious objectivity.
So the question I would pose to Fitzgerald would be this: Who is the "we" that she references in this statement? As a result of attention to reproductions of folk art, photography, and other primary materials, these contemporary texts also diverge in visual style from their predecessors.
And History is just one damn thing after another" p.The American Past America Revised: History School-Books in the Twentieth Century. by Frances Fitzgerald. Atlantic-Little, Brown. pp. Frances FitzGerald was born in New York City, (), a highly critical review of history textbooks published in the United States; Cities on a Hill (), an analysis of United States urban history compared to ideals; Way Out There in the Blue: Reagan, Her "Rewriting American history" was published in The Norton Reader.
America Revised [Frances Fitzgerald] on killarney10mile.com *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. FitzGerald's polemic analysis argues that contemporary texts reflect current social quarrels, frequently distorting history into propaganda5/5(5).
Home Essays The Trouble With History. The Trouble With History. Topics: History In "Rewriting American History" Frances Fitzgerald describes the differences between history books from her childhood and the newer ones from the nineteen-seventies; the examples show how the changes in content and perspective of junior high school.
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FitzGerald's polemic analysis argues that contemporary texts reflect current social quarrels, frequently distorting history into 5/5(5).
Get this from a library! America revised: history schoolbooks in the twentieth century. [Frances FitzGerald] -- In this book, the author analyzes the books from which American children get their first and most lasting idea of what the United States is all about.
Her thesis is that with all the rewriting of.Download