Current Issue Article Abstracts

Winter 2022, Vol. 42.4

• • • • • • • •

ARTICLES

 


Indigenous Waterways and the Boundaries of the Great Plains
Christopher Steinke

In the decades leading up to the Civil War, American officials established multiple reservations on the west bank of the Missouri River and used it to delimit land for Indian Removal. They expected the wide Missouri to contain Indigenous peoples in the Great Plains to the west of the river, dividing them from white settlers on the east bank. Yet throughout this period, Siouan-speaking peoples in the central Plains—Omaha, Otoe, and Missouria peoples—fought to uphold their navigation rights on the river and preserve access to homelands on its east side. Enlisting Indigenous navigational technologies, they continued traveling on the river and landed repeatedly on its east bank, where they carried out hunting expeditions along eastern tributaries into northwest Missouri and western Iowa and confronted soldiers and settlers attempting to enforce the river boundary of Indian Territory. In doing so, Omahas, Otoes, and Missourias sustained their own deep histories of mobility and communication on Indigenous waterways that spanned American boundaries in the Great Plains. This article addresses how they resisted American authority across the Missouri watershed in the early to mid-nineteenth century.


Forum: The Material Conditions of Historians' Labor


Preface: The Material Conditions of Historians' Labor
Will B. Mackintosh, Johann Neem, Jessica Choppin Roney

Academic Journals rely on people who devote their time and expertise to supporting the production of historical scholarship in diverse institutions—in archives and libraries, universities and museums, professional organizations and their conferences, and journals and presses. This network is complex, yet at its core it takes for granted the existence of researchers with the time, resources, and incentive to produce new scholarship. With the decline of traditional academic structures, other ways are needed to support and facilitate the production of knowledge.

Introduction: Academic Capitalism and the Crisis of the Professoriate
Henry Reichman

In history, as in all disciplines, scholarship has over the past several decades been shaped increasingly by the emergence of what has been called "academic capitalism," which has reshaped universities in accordance with market logic and market priorities. This order is characterized most vividly by the emergence of a system of stark and increasing inequality between a relatively privileged minority of institutions and professors, themselves internally differentiated and besieged, and a growing mass that lacks the security and resources to engage in scholarship. The advent of academic capitalism and the consequent bifurcation and stratification of the professoriate and the deterioration of its power and conditions of work inevitably have a profound impact on who enters the profession, on who will teach and write history and, ultimately, on what and whose histories will be studied. For the first time in many decades historians may need to justify to both our students and the broader public not only our right and responsibility to determine what constitutes historical knowledge but also the very existence of our discipline as something other than the inculcation of patriotic and cultural values. In addItion, the logic of academic capitalism, with its expanding segmentation of faculty work and its stress on measuring, assessment, and quantification, has pushed everyone to be more competitive and focused on productivity. These developments pose a major threat not only to the academic freedom of individual scholars but to scholarship itself.

Does the Field Deserve Our Work?
Erin Bartram

In the United States and in many other places around the world, the primary labor condition shaping scholarly production is the rapidly-diminishing number of tenure-track or equivalent positions that customarily supported scholars in this work. While there are some steps the JER could take to make it easier and more rewarding for those working without this support to share their research, steps that would also help tenure-track scholars in under-resourced positions, they will not make up for the knowledge production that continues to be lost with the collapse of academic hiring. If we desire a thriving field, collective action is the only path to a long-term solution.

Rethinking Time, Money, Access, and Community
Liz Covart

Historians need time, money, and community to support their research, writing, and scholarly production. Where can historians turn to get the help they need to produce works of scholarly history as all but the most elite universities shift away from providing tenure-track positions and research support? What can scholarly organizations like the Society for Historians of the Early American Republic do to support those who wish to pursue scholarly work but find themselves working in undersupported positions or outside of the academy? This essay explores ideas for how scholarly organizations can better support and help their members produce scholarship and include them in scholarly publishing and peer review.


Lessons from the Year without Archives

Simon Finger

This essay examines the obstacles to scholarly production faced by history instructors outside of the tenure track. The author argues that the global disruption of academic work caused by the Covid-19 pandemic illuminates some of these structural barriers, and especially the role of uncertainty about future employment. The essay then asks whether some of the accommodations offered during the pandemic could be adapted to help adjuncts and other contingent faculty contribute to the historical discipline and publish more original research.


Equity and Integration: Scholarship after COVID-19

Stacey Robertson

This essay argues that in order to support continued scholarly productivity among junior historians faculty and academic leaders must collaborate to revise tenure and promotion guidelines with an equity mindset and create increased opportunities for integrated scholarship.


Up for Interpretation: The Historical Interpreter's Role in Producing and Expanding Scholarship

Jessie Serfilippi

Public historians and historical interpreters are often misunderstood by academic historians. They face challenges such as their work being undervalued and being underpaid. Through personal experience about the publication of a paper that bridged the public and academic history fields, the author describes ways she believes the fields could merge more to the benefit of not only historians, but the general public as well.


The Bridge: On the Role of Historical Societies, Archives, and Research Libraries

Kanisorn Wongsrichanalai

This article reviews the role of historical societies and libraries in supporting scholarly researcher. It considers pandemic era innovations and options for future support.

 

Engaging Historiography


The Genie and the Troll: Capitalism in the Early American Republic
John Lauritz Larson

This essay reviews the efforts of modern historians to explain the rise and development of capitalism in the early United States. Often assumed to be synonymous with democracy and freedom, capitalism as a system of social and economic organization has presented historians with an interpretive dilemma—suggested by the allusion to "the genie and the troll." The rich historiography from the 20th and early 21st centuries is surveyed here.

Reviews

The Folly of Revolution: Thomas Bradbury Chandler and the Loyalist Mind in a Democratic Age by S. Scott Rohrer (review)
Lindsay Schakenbach Regele, Kristin O'brassill-Kulfan, Gregg Frazer

 

Warfare and Logistics along the US–Canadian Border during the War of 1812 by Christopher Dishman (review)
Don Hickey

 

Engineering Expansion: The U.S. Army and Economic Development, 1787–1860 by William D. Adler (review)
Andrew J. B. Fagal

 

On Wide Seas: The US Navy in the Jacksonian Era by Claude Berube (review)
David Head

 

Rival Visions: How the Views of Jefferson and His Contemporaries Defined the Early American Republic ed. by Dustin A. Gish and Andrew Bibby (review)
Dael A. Norwood

 

All for Liberty: The Charleston Workhouse Slave Rebellion of 1849 by Jeff Strickland (review)
Michael A. Schoeppner

 

A Fire Bell in the Past: The Missouri Crisis at 200: Western Slavery, National Impasse ed. by Jeffrey L. Pasley and John Craig Hammond (review)
Van Gosse

 

Trouble of the World: Slavery and Empire in the Age of Capital by Zach Sell (review)
Nicholas Crawford

 

Family, Slavery, and Love in the Early American Republic: The Essays of Jan Ellen Lewis ed. by Barry Bienstock, Annette Gordon-Reed, and Peter S. Onuf (review)
Sara Georgini

 

America's Religious Crossroads: Faith and Community in the Emerging Midwest by Stephen T. Kissel (review)
Marcus Gallo

 

Law in American Meetinghouses: Church Discipline and Civil Authority in Kentucky, 1780–1845 by Jeffrey Thomas Perry (review)
Andrea S. Watkins

 

The Deviant Prison: Philadelphia's Eastern State Penitentiary and the Origins of America's Modern Penal System, 1892–1913 by Ashley T. Rubin (review)
Morgan Shahan

 

Their Determination to Remain: A Cherokee Community's Resistance to the Trail of Tears in North Carolina by Lance Green (review)
Adam Pratt

 

French St. Louis: Landscape, Contexts, and Legacy ed. by Jay Gitlin, Robert Michael Morrissey, and Peter J. Kastor (review)
Justin M. Carroll

 

Scientific Americans: Invention, Technology, and National Identity by Susan Branson (review)
Albert J. Churella

 

The Birth Certificate: An American History by Susan J. Pearson (review)
Jameson Sweet

 

The Transcendentalists and Their World by Robert A. Gross (review)
Camden Burd

 

Founded in Fiction: The Uses of Fiction in the Early United States by Thomas Koenigs (review)
Betsy Klimasmith

 

Index
Index—Volume 42, 2022