Historians Respond to NY Times Article on History Textbook Regional Differences

Historians in the News
tags: education, textbooks, high school

After we published an examination of how politics shapes the content of American history textbooks in Texas and California, thousands of people reacted online.

Hundreds of differences — including some that reflect the nation’s deepest partisan divides on issues like race, gender and immigration — emerged in the analysis of eight commonly used textbooks in California and Texas, two of the country’s largest markets.


The Princeton historian Kevin M. Kruse started a conversation with his Twitter followers about the long history of conservative activists working to influence the Texas curriculum. He shared a 1982 Texas Monthly profile of Norma and Mel Gabler, who organized against what they saw as liberal bias in textbooks, setting the template for similar efforts since.

Professor Kruse also called attention to the findings in our piece on how Reconstruction and lynchings were covered differently in the two states.

Read entire article at NY Times

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