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Archaeological Narratives in Greek History Textbooks

From Texts to Pupils’ Interpretations

Maria Repoussi and Konstatina Papakosta


Building on previous research concerning the archaeological narratives of Greek history textbooks, this study investigates the impact of these studies on schoolchildren's historical ideas. In the context of these narratives, the article addresses two significant landmarks of Greek antiquity, namely the Mycenaean civilization and the Acropolis of Athens. It is a small scale sample survey that draws its data from a set of 120 twelve-year-old individuals who were asked to complete the survey at the beginning and end of the first year of secondary school. The results relativize the implicit or explicit assumption that history textbooks have a decisive influence on or even shape students’ historical ideas and interpretations. Rather, history textbooks primarily facilitate the acquisition of specific information.

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An Educationally Sound Experiment?

The Ohio School of the Air, 1928–1937

Nathan R. Myers


This article recounts the history of the Ohio School of the Air (OSA) as a technological innovation that demonstrates the promise and limitations of technology in education. The article situates the OSA within the larger progressive educational movement, detailing the OSA's rise and reasons for its decline. This article argues that, while the OSA sought to bring education to all public school pupils in Ohio, the OSA's choice of content and contributors reflected the biases of society-wide power structures related to gender, race and class that were present in US society in the early twentieth century. Though OSA founder Benjamin Darrow had a vision of a robust, radio-based curriculum that would bring culture to the masses, the OSA was ultimately derailed by financial difficulties and failed to fundamentally alter the nature of schooling.

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Making America Great Again in Christian Schools

Using Historical Narratives of Chaos and Order to Make “Real Americans”

Neall Pogue


This article explores the historical narrative developed by the two most popular Christian school publishers (A Beka Book and Bob Jones University Press) at their founding in the mid-1970s. Specifically, they promoted the idea that it was exclusively white Anglo-American men who heroically created the United States by separating order from chaos. The publishers utilized this story to direct the home and Christian school pupil to save and protect what their ancestors created. The importance of such messages gave meaning and ideology to white conservative evangelicals who have come to think of themselves as “real Americans” fighting the ongoing culture wars.

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“The Pearl Harbor of the Twenty-first Century”?

A Comparative Analysis of Pearl Harbor and 9/11 in History Textbooks

Daniel Berman and Jeremy Stoddard


In the aftermath of the 11 September 2001 attacks against the United States, people immediately compared the attack with the Japanese assault on Pearl Harbor sixty years prior. In this article, we explore how US and world history textbooks published shortly after Pearl Harbor and 9/11 depicted and contextualized both events. The textbooks demonstrate that the depictions of Pearl Harbor neatly fit within a chapter about the origins, battles and home fronts of the Second World War. However, textbooks struggled to situate 9/11, placing it within histories of terrorism, histories of the modern Middle East, or twenty-first century problems. Moreover, the textbook authors likely relied on the powerful collective memories that each event triggered because the textbook descriptions of both attacks are exceedingly brief.

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Social Identity and Conflict Dynamics in Indian History Textbooks

Melissa DeLury


History textbooks play a critical role in their connection to conflict. While they can play a role in dehumanizing the “other” by propagating the myths and narratives of dominant groups, they can also play a transformational role in challenging discourses and narratives at the root of conflict. This article explores the relationship between social identity and conflict dynamics in India by examining textbooks from three periods of Indian history (colonial, post-independence, and the rise of the Bharatiya Janata Party from 1999 to 2004), in order to explore how religion became a salient marker of identity informing social boundary creations and conflict dynamics. This article concludes by suggesting opportunities for future research and possibilities for peace.

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Teaching about the Holocaust in Albania, Kosovo, and North Macedonia

A Comparative Analysis

Esilda Luku


This article provides a comprehensive overview of the way the Holocaust is taught in pre-university education in Albania, Kosovo, and North Macedonia. It analyses the context in which references to the Holocaust occur in curricula and examines different approaches adopted by teachers based on data collected in a survey. The research reveals that most teachers concentrate on perpetrator narratives, give priority to moral lessons derived from the Holocaust at the expense of a historical narrative, and find it difficult to effectively manage the limited time available for history lessons. However, some progress has been made regarding teachers’ perceptions of and approaches to teaching about the Holocaust in line with guidelines published by the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance's Education Working Group.

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The Aesthetic of Grotesque in Lu Yang's Delusional Mandala and Delusional World

Gabriel Remy-Handfield


This article explores the aesthetic of the grotesque in Lu Yang's recent work Delusional Mandala (2015) and Delusional World (2020). I argue that the aesthetic of the grotesque envisioned in these two works becomes a radical tool for the artist's deconstruction and dismantling of the socially and culturally sanctioned boundaries of corporeality and normativity. My approach to Lu Yang's aesthetic of the grotesque is based on Sara Cohen Shabot's theorization of grotesque philosophy and the grotesque body as well on the concept of faciality proposed by Deleuze and Guattari in A Thousand Plateaus (1980). Two questions guide my reflection and readings in this article: What are the characteristics of the grotesque aesthetic in Lu Yang's films? In what ways does this aesthetic deconstruct concepts such as the human and normativity?

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Aesthetics of Futurism

Lu Yang's Art and an Organological Redefinition of the Human in the Planetary Age

Hai Ren


Studying artworks on the human body and the brain, as exemplified by Lu Yang's work, enables a new perspective in the debates over the redefinitions of the human, whether anthropocenic redefinitions of the human (in the scholarships of the Anthropocene, posthumanism, new materialism, and speculative realism) or a technoscientific redefinition of the human (in the scholarships of technological transformations). Not only does Lu Yang question the defining properties of the humanness but the artist also creates an organological form of the human. This organological perspective enables an aesthetics of futurism based on both a nonreproductive kinship between the human and the nonhuman, and a new regime of the future grounded in the habitability of the human as a more-than-human agent in the planetary age.

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Avatar vs. Artist

Barbara Pollack

Climbing, climbing the circular staircase of a decaying art deco apartment house, a throwback to Old Shanghai's grandeur in the 1930s, I felt like I was stepping back in time. It was fall of 2011, and I was accompanied by a twenty-seven-year-old artist named Lu Yang who led me on this upward trek to a studio. As Lu Yang opened the green door to the space, I was immediately thrown forward from the past to the future. The darkened room was packed with computer monitors flickering with the running text of chatrooms. Aquariums, filled with dead frogs floating in formaldehyde, gave off an eerie green light. There were no sketches or paintings or anything like traditional art making. What an awakening! I realized that this was the kind of art I had been searching for on my trips to China since 2004. I was looking for an artist whose work reflected the enormous upheaval of the Reform era, the influx of Western goods, the possibilities of the internet, and the shock to the psyche that these changes had wrought. Lu Yang completely fit the bill.

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Book Reviews

Wyatt Moss-Wellington, Dooley Murphy, Robert Sinnerbrink, and Kirsten Moana Thompson

Martin P. Rossouw. Transformational Ethics of Film. Leiden: Brill, 2021, 316 pp., $150.00 (hardback), ISBN: 9789004459953.

Grant Tavinor. The Aesthetics of Virtual Reality. New York: Routledge, 2021, 163 pp., $160.00, ISBN: 9780367619251.

Rebecca A. Sheehan. American Avant-Garde Cinema's Philosophy of the In-Between. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2020, 292 + xi pp., $41.95 (paperback), ISBN: 9780190949716.

Deborah Walker-Morrison. Classic French Noir: Gender and the Cinema of Fatal Desire. London: I.B. Tauris, 2019, 272 pp., $77.00, ISBN 9781350157446.