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Category Archive for: ‘blog’

Reading the Cemetery

[a side trip on the way to the dissertation]

Hollywood Cemetery in Richmond, Virginia epitomizes the cemetery as narrative.

An outgrowth of the garden cemetery movement of the mid-nineteenth century, its shaded pathways overlooking the tumult of the James River wind among ancient trees and over slopes of well-tended lawns and flowering bushes. They frame gravesites of familiar people, a cross-section of national and local politicians and poets, founding fathers, businessmen and soldiers–Presidents James Monroe and John Tyler, Jefferson Davis, J.E.B. Stuart, Fitzhugh Lee, John Randolph, Edgar Allen Poe and generations of entrepreneurs and early industrialists who built Richmond’s cultural and economic base–the Valentines, Haxalls, Myers, Harvies, Mayos, Triggs, Branches, Glasgows, and Bruces.

And the graves of Confederate soldiers, officers and enlisted, fill hillsides.

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Is it possible to get as excited about pencils as it is about 2 gigahertz intel dual core mobile processors with 2GB DDR2 multitasking memory capability?

Or, Why Can’t I Just Go to the Dollar Store and Grab a Six-Color Box of Rosearts?

Written for History 615: History and Cartography: freehand map assignment

I miss the September ritual of buying notebooks, pens and pencils for a new school year.  These days I’m organically united with my computer and hyperventilate if no wireless internet is nearby, but putting a new entry into Zotero doesn’t inspire quite the same anticipation as an empty, college-ruled, three-subject spiral and a newly-sharpened number 2 Faber-Castell with my name stamped on it.  Forget that the writing utensils got lost, covers came off the notebooks, and I couldn’t read my own handwriting after the third day.

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Who reads history?

Written for History 697: History and New Media

In recent interviews, CBS news anchor, Katie Couric, asked presidential candidates ten tough questions, including, “Which book, besides the Bible, would you consider essential to have at the White House?

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