Footnotes are essays designed in particular for teachers and students and are often drawn from the lectures at our nationally recognized Butcher History Institute for Teachers.


Between Piety and Patriotism: Shariʿa and The American Way of Life

March 27, 2017 · Aaron Rock-Singer

In May 2016, a row broke out at the Metropolitan Recreation Center in Williamsburg, New York following an anonymous complaint regarding its summer schedule. The Center had long offered gender-segregated swimming hours for Williamsburg residents who, for religious reasons, ...

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Teaching the Cold War: Economics, Ideology, and Morality

October 6, 2016 · Lucien Ellington

A better understanding of the Cold War fosters insights into the incentive structures of socialism in its “democratic” forms as well as some understanding into its seemingly eternal appeal to large portions of the population. Students who systematically study ...

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The Great War’s Impact on American Foreign Policy and Civic Religion

April 25, 2016 · Walter A. McDougall

What happened in 1898 was accidental, but only in the sense that if you roll a die over and over again, it will turn up six sooner or later. That is, the tipping point was sure to come ...

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Religion and Secularism in the Middle East: A Primer

November 25, 2015 · Aaron Rock-Singer

The flag of Egypt, 1922-1953 Abstract: Religion was a pillar of pre-modern political identity in the Middle East, arising out of Muslims’ understanding of Islam’s foundational moment and state institutions that developed with the spread of Islamic Empire. Beginning ...

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Religious Minorities in the Modern Middle East

November 20, 2015 · Lev Weitz

The majority of the Middle East’s population today is Muslim, as it has been for centuries. However, as the place of origin of a range of world religions – including Judaism, Christianity, Zoroastrianism, and many lesser-known faiths – it ...

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Identity in the Pre-Modern Middle East

October 28, 2015 · Jonathan Berkey

We live in an age of identity politics.  We define ourselves by one or more objective measures: measures of race, ethnicity, gender, politics, religion, sexual orientation, to name just a few. Those measures then define who we are to ...

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Post-Colonial States and the Struggle for Identity in the Middle East since World War Two

October 23, 2015 · Samuel Helfont

The term “post-colonial” has presented a seminal problem for historians of the 20th century Middle East. As this essay will detail, debates over the term have provided an important axis around which discussions of political identity revolve. Following World ...

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Islam and Islamism: A Primer for Teachers and Students

August 25, 2015 · Samuel Helfont

Defining – and distinguishing between – the terms Islam and Islamism has broad consequences for America, both domestically and internationally. However, teaching about the relationship between these two concepts involves negotiating numerous sensitivities and it can cause considerable consternation ...

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Civil Liberties vs. State Security in Historical Perspective

May 21, 2015 · Louis Fisher

These remarks were delivered at a history institute for high school teachers on Ethical Dilemmas in American Warfare,” April 18-19, 2015, sponsored jointly by the Foreign Policy Research Institute’s Butcher History Institute and the First Division Museum at Cantigny, ...

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The Dilemmas of Captivity

May 7, 2015 · Paul J. Springer

This essay is based on a presentation to a history institute  for teachers on “Ethical Dilemmas in American Warfare,” April 2015, sponsored by the Foreign Policy Research Institute’s Butcher History Institute, the First Division Museum at Cantigny, and Carthage ...

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