SOURCE: Guardian (UK)
comments powered by Disqus
Michael White: 1812 ... The War That Canada WonRoundup: Talking About History
Michael White is assistant editor at The Guardian.
In an anniversary-obsessed year – with the Titanic centenary, the bicentenary of Dickens's birth (and Shakespeare's 448th), and the Queen's Diamond Jubilee – one such opportunity is largely conspicuous by its absence. Yet not everyone gets to burn down the White House after eating a fleeing president's dinner. There is even a helpful clue in the title: the War of 1812. It followed the US Congress's indignant declaration of war on 24 June against – yes – imperial Britain, a country grappling with a mad King George III, a murdered PM (Spencer Perceval) and a 20-year struggle with France.
Strange that, apart from a couple of new histories, the 30-month conflict on land, sea and lake has had little attention in either country, though Canada pays more. Its existence as an independent country with an undefended 3,000-mile land border is one of several major consequences of a silly conflict that embarrassed both sides – and still does.
Britain had its hands full fighting Napoleon in 1812, and (as in 1914-17) Americans were cross with the way both sides' embargoes disrupted their trade. But they were especially cross with maritime Britain for seizing British-born sailors to serve in the Royal Navy, and for supporting tribal warriors like Tecumseh in the frontier wars...
comments powered by Disqus
- Rubio Surges Into Second In New Hampshire
- Branstad Says Cruz Ran ‘Unethical’ Campaign
- Christie Highlights Santorum’s Endorsement of Rubio
- Portman Comes Out Against Trade Deal
- Megyn Kelly Gets a Book Deal
- A Big List of the Bad Things Clinton Has Done
- An Unambiguous Sign Sanders Won Last Night’s Debate
- Still Friends at the End
- Quote of the Day
- Trump Still Leads as Clinton Slips
- Clinton Can’t Shake Image as Wall Street’s Friend
- Maddow Doesn’t See Sanders Winning
- Why Does the Media Still Shield Chelsea Clinton?
- Bush Jokes His Mother May Have Abused Him
- Rubio Closes the Gap in New Hampshire
- Humans Hard-Wired to Teach, Anthropologist Says
- Parents outraged after students shown ‘white guilt’ cartoon for Black History Month
- Maryland is once again considering retiring its state song
- One of the last remaining Nazis goes on trial in Germany
- Inside story finally told of the young US diplomat who cracked the case of the murder of 4 nuns in El Salvador in 1980
- A historian’s advice to students thinking of getting a PhD in a tough economic climate
- German historian Heinz Richter cleared of charges
- English professor uses literature to help cure historical amnesia
- WSJ features an article by a conservative calling for the abolition of Black History Month
- Mary Beard, herself a bestselling author, wonders why more women historians aren't