Between 2011 and 2015 Americans will commemorate the sesquicentennial of the American Civil War. Different people have looked at this event in different ways at different times, reminding us that history is in part a conversation between past and present, and that in deciding how we approach this event we say something about ourselves. How do we discuss divisive issues? How do we recall political and military events? How do we identify and define what to commemorate … and what do we overlook or set aside?
Brooks D. Simpson is ASU Foundation Professor of History, teaching in Barrett, The Honors College, as well as in the School of Historical, Philosophical, and Religious Studies. He received his B.A. in History and International Relations from the University of Virginia (1979), followed by his M.A. (1982) and Ph.D. (1989) in History from the University of Wisconsin. Author of seven books, co-author of two more, and editor or co-editor of seven other volumes, his area of expertise is nineteenth century United States history, especially the period of the Civil War and Reconstruction, as well as the American presidency.