Recommended Readings |
Of Related Interest

This list offers a brief sampling of memory-related titles within the sweep of United States history. We make no effort to separate them into more specific sub-fields, and no claim of thoroughness in any topic. Moreover, the rich literature on public history and preservation is admittedly under-represented. We find many of these to be of great interest, and hope to encourage a broader reading in American memory studies.

As always, we would be happy to receive recommendations to supplement the list.


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Alford, Suzanne M.  “Student Display of Confederate Symbols in Public Schools.” School Law Bulletin 33 (Winter 2002): 1-7.

Baker, Bruce E.  What Reconstruction Meant: Historical Memory in the American South.  Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2007.

Bellafaire, Judith A.  The Army Nurse Corps: A Commemoration of World War II Service. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Army Center of Military History, 1993.

Berlin, Ira.  “American Slavery in History and Memory and the Search for Social Justice.” Journal of American History 90:4 (March 2004): 1251-1268.

Bethel, Elizabeth Rauh.  The Roots of African-American Identity: Memory and History in Free Antebellum Communities.  New York: St. Martin’s Press, 1997.

Bleakney, Julia.  Revisiting Vietnam: Memoirs, Memorials, Museums.  New York: Routledge, 2006.

Blight, David W., ed.  Passages to Freedom: The Underground Railroad in History and Memory. Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Books, 2004.

Bodnar, John.  Remaking America: Public Memory, Commemoration, and Patriotism in the Twentieth Century.  Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1992.

Bodnar, John, ed.  Bonds of Affection: Americans Define Their Patriotism.  Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1996.

Boehm, Scott.  “Privatizing Public Memory: The Price of Patriotic Philanthropy and the Post  9/11 Politics of Display.” American Quarterly 58 (December 2006): 1147-1166.

Bogart, Michele H.  Public Sculpture and the Civic Ideal in New York City, 1890–1930.  Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1989.

Brear, Holly Beachley.  Inherit the Alamo: Myth and Ritual at an American Shrine.  Austin: University of Texas Press, 1995.

Brundage, W. Fitzhugh.  “White Women and the Politics of Historical Memory in the New South, 1880-1920.”  In Jumpin’ Jim Crow: Race and Politics in the New South, eds. Glenda E. Gilmore, Jane Dailey, and Bryant Simon, #-#.  Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2000.

Budreau, Lisa M. Bodies of War: World War I and the Politics of Commemoration in America, 1919-1933. New York: New York University Press, 2010.

Cantor, George.  Historic Landmarks of Black America.  Detroit: Gale Research, 1991.

Chidester, David and Edward T. Linenthal, eds.  American Sacred Space.  Bloomington: University of Indiana Press, 1995.

Dedman, James M., IV.  “At Daggers Drawn: The Confederate Battle Flag and the School Classroom-A Case Study of a Broken First Amendment Formula.”  Baylor Law Review 53 (Fall 2001): 877-927.

Des Jardins, Julie. Women and the Historical Enterprise in America: Gender, Race, and the Politics of Memory, 1880-1945.  Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2003.

Doss, Erika. Memorial Mania: Public Feelings in America. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2010.

Drago, Edmund and Ralph Melnick.  “The Old Slave Mart Museum, Charleston, South Carolina: Rediscovering the Past.”  Civil War History 27:2 (June 1981).

Fabian, Ann.  The Unvarnished Truth: Personal Narratives in Nineteenth-Century America.  Berkeley: University of California Press, 2000.

Fabre, Genevieve and Robert O’Meally, eds.  History and Memory in African-American Culture. New York: Oxford University Press, 1994.

Flores, Richard R.  Remembering the Alamo: Memory, Modernity, and the Master Symbol.  Austin: University of Texas Press, 2002.

Foner, Philip S.  “Black Participation in the Centennial of 1876.”  Negro History Bulletin 39 (February 1976): 532-538.

French, Scot.  The Rebellious Slave: Nat Turner in American Memory.  Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 2004.

French, Stanley.  “The Cemetery as Cultural Institution: The Establishment of Mount Auburn and the ‘Rural Cemetery’ Movement.”  American Quarterly 26: 37-59.

Frisch, Michael. “American History and the Structures of Collective Memory: A Modern Exercise in Empirical Iconography.” Journal of American History 75 (March 1989): 1130-1155.

Gable, Eric, Richard Handler, and Anna Lawson. “On the Uses of Relativism: Fact, Conjecture, and White and Black Histories at Colonial Williamsburg.” American Ethnologist 98 (1996): 791-805.

Gara, Larry.  “A Glorious Time: the 1874 Abolitionist Reunion in Chicago.”  Illinois State Historical Society Journal 65: 280-292.

Glassberg, David.  “History and the Public: Legacies of the Progressive Era.”  Journal of American History 73 (March 1987): 957-980.

Glassberg, David.  American Historical Pageantry: The Uses of Tradition in the Early Twentieth Century.  Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1990.

Glassberg, David.  Sense of History: The Place of the Past in American Life.  Amherst: University of Massachusetts Press, 2001.

Gravely, William B.  “The Dialectic of Double-Consciousness in Black American Freedom Celebration, 1808-1963.”  Journal of Negro History 67 (1982): 302-305.

Gregory, Stanford W., and Jerry M. Lewis.  “Symbols of Collective Memory: The Social Process of Memorializing May 4, 1970, at Kent State University.” Symbolic Interaction 11 (1988): 213-233.

Griffin, Martin. Ashes of the Mind: War and Memory in Northern Literature, 1865-1900. Amherst, MA: University of Massachusetts Press, 2009.

Greenberg, Kenneth S.  Nat Turner: A Slave Rebellion in History and Memory.  New York: Oxford University Press, 2003.

Hall, Jacquelyn Dowd.  “The Long Civil Rights Movement and the Political Uses of the Past.” Journal of American History 91:4 (March 2005): 1233-1263.

Handler, Richard, and Eric Gable.  The New History in an Old Museum: Creating the Past at Colonial Williamsburg. Durham: Duke University Press, 1997.

Henna, Stephen P. "A Slavery Museum?: Race, Memory, and Landscape in Fredericksburg, Virginia." Southern Geographer 48, No. 3 (2008): 316-337.

Hennessy, John. "The Park Service is Rethinking the Way it Tells Civil War Stories". National Parks 82, No. 3 (2008): 52.

Horton, James Oliver and Lois E. Horton.  Slavery and Public History: The Tough Stuff of American Memory.  New York: New Press/Norton, 2006.

Hyman, Jonathan.  “The Public Face of 9/11: memory and Portraiture in the Landscape.” Journal of American History 94:1 (June 2007): 183-192.

Izumi, Masumi. “Prohibiting ‘American Concentration Camps’ Repeal of the Emergency Detention Act and the Public Historical Memory of the Japanese American Internment.” Pacific Historical Review 74 (May 2005): 165-193.

Janson, H. W.  19th-Century Sculpture.  New York: Abrams, 1985.

Jeffrey, Julie Roy.  Abolitionists Remember: Antislavery Autobiographies and the Unfinished Work of Emancipation.  Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2008.

Kammen, Michael.  A Season of Youth: The American Revolution and the Historical Imagination. New York: Knopf, 1978.

Kammen, Michael.  Selvages and Biases: The Fabric of History in American Culture. Ithaca, N.Y.: Cornell University Press, 1987.

Keene, Jennifer D.  Doughboys, the Great War, and the Remaking of America.  Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2001.

Kidd, William and Brian Murdoch, eds.  Memory and Memorials: The Commemorative Century.  Burlington, Vt.: Ashgate, 2004.

Küchler, Susanne, and Walter Melion, eds.  Images of Memory: On Remembering and Representation.  Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institution Press, 1991.

Levinson, Sanford.  Written in Stone: Public Monuments in Changing Societies. Durham: Duke University Press, 1998.

Levin, Amy K., ed.  Defining Memory: Local Museums and the Construction of History in America’s Changing Communities.  Lanham: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2007.

Lewis, Ear.  “Connecting Memory, Self, and the Power of Place in African American Urban History.” Journal of Urban History 21 (March 1995): 347-371.

Lewis, Jan E., and Peter S. Onuf, eds.  Sally Hemings and Thomas Jefferson: History, Memory, and Civic Culture.  Charlottesville: University Press of Virginia, 1999.

Linenthal, Edward T.  Preserving Memory: The Struggle to Create America’s Holocaust Museum.  New York: Viking, 1995.

Linenthal, Edward T.  Sacred Ground: Americans and Their Battlefields.  Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1993.

Linenthal, Edward T. “Struggling with History and Memory.” Journal of American History 82 (December, 1995): 1094-1101.

Linenthal, Edward T.  The Unfinished Bombing: Oklahoma City in American Memory.  New York: Oxford University Press, 2001.

Lipsitz, George.  Time Passages: Collective Memory and American Popular Culture. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1990.

MacCloskey, Munro.  Hallowed Ground: Our National Cemeteries.  New York: Richard Rosen, 1968.

McPherson, Tara.  Reconstructing Dixie: Race, Gender, and Nostalgia in the Imagined South.  Durham, N.C.: Duke University Press, 2003.

Marling, Karal Ann.  George Washington Slept Here: Colonial Revivals and American Culture, 1876-1986.  Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1988.

Minardi, Margot. Making Slavery History: Abolitionism and the Politics of Memory in Massachusetts. New York: Oxford University Press, 2010.

Morris, Richard.  Sinners, Lovers, and Heroes: An Essay on Memorializing in Three American Cultures.  Albany: State University of New York Press, 1997.

Murtagh, William J.  Keeping Time: The History and Theory of Preservation in America.  New York:  John Wiley & Sons, 1997.

Nash, Gary B.  First City: Philadelphia and the Forging of Historical Memory.  Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2002.

Neal, Arthur G.  National Trauma and Collective Memory: Extraordinary Events in the American Experience.  Armonk, N.Y.: M.E. Sharpe, 2005.

Nossiter, Adam.  Of Long Memory: Mississippi and the Murder of Medgar Evers.  Reading, Mass.: Addison-Wesley, 1994.

Oostindie, Gert, ed.  Facing Up to the Past: Perspectives on the Commemoration of Slavery from Africa, the Americas and Europe.  Kingston, Jamaica: Ian Randle Publishers, 2001.

Osagie, Iyunolu Folayan.  The Amistad Revolt: Memory, Slavery, and the Politics of Identity in the United States and Sierra Leone.  Athens: University of Georgia Press, 2000.

Pessen, Edward.  The Log Cabin Myth.  New Haven: Yale University Press, 1984.

Piehler, Kurt.  Remembering War the American Way.  Washington, D. C.: Smithsonian Institution Press, 1995.

Reiss, Benjamin.  The Showman and the Slave: Race, Death, and Memory in Barnum’s America.  Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 2001.

Romano, Renee C., and Leigh Raiford, eds.  The Civil Rights Movement in American Memory. Athens: University of Georgia Press, 2006.

Rosenberg, Emily S.  A Date Which Will Live: Pearl Harbor in American Memory.  Durham: Duke University Press, 2003.

Rosenzweig, Roy, and David Thelen.  The Presence of the Past: Popular Uses of History in American Life.  New York: Columbia University Press, 1998.

Ross, Dorothy.  “Historical Consciousness in Nineteenth-Century America.”  American Historical Review 89 (October 1984): 909-928.

Rothman, Hal.  Preserving Different Pasts: The American National Monuments.  Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1989.

Schudson, Michael.  Watergate in American Memory: How We Remember, Forget, and Reconstruct the Past.  New York: Basic Books, 1992.

Schwartz, Barry.  “Social Change and Collective Memory: The Democratization of George Washington.” American Sociological Review 56 (1991): 221-236.

Sernett, Milton C.  Harriet Tubman: Myth, Memory, and History.  Durham: Duke University Press, 2007.

Sloane, David Charles.  The Last Great Necessity: Cemeteries in American History.  Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1991.

Smith, Rex Alan.  Pacific Legacy: Image and Memory from World War II in the Pacific.  New York: Abbeville Press, 2002.

Spillman, Lyn.  Nation and Commemoration: Creating National Identities in the United States and Australia. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1997.

Spindel, Donna J.  “Assessing Memory: Twentieth Century Slave Narratives Reconsidered.” Journal of Interdisciplinary History 27 (Autumn 1996): 247-261.

Stabile, Susan M.  Memory’s Daughters: The Material Culture of Remembrance in Eighteenth-Century America.  Ithaca, N.Y.: Cornell University Press, 2004.

Stewart, James Brewer and William Lloyd Garrison.  William Lloyd Garrison at Two Hundred: History, Legacy and Memory.  New Haven: Yale University Press, 2008.

Sturken, Marita. Tangled Memories: The Vietnam War, the AIDS Epidemic, and the Politics of Remembering. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1997.

Sweet, Leonard I.  “The Fourth of July and Black Americans in the Nineteenth Century.” Journal of Negro History 61 (1976): 256-275.

Swidler, Arlene.  “Catholics and the 1876 Centennial.”  Catholic Historical Review 62: 349-365.

Tyrrell, Ian.  “Public at the Creation: Place, Memory, and Historical Practice in the Mississippi Valley Historical Association, 1907-1950.” Journal of American History 94:1 (June 2007): 19-46.

Warren, Robert Penn.  The Legacy of the Civil War.  Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1983.

Wilson, Keith, ed.  Forging the Collective Memory: Government and International Historians Through Two World Wars.  Providence: Berghahn Books, 1996.

York, Neil Longley.  Fiction as Fact: The Horse Soldiers and Popular Memory.  Kent, Ohio: Kent State University Press, 2001.

Yuhl, Stephanie E.  A Golden Haze of Memory: The Making of Historic Charleston.  Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2005.



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