By Sean Grim ’14
Donald L. Miller, John Henry McCracken Professor of History, will join ranks with America’s most prestigious historians when he presents a Gilder Lehrman Teacher Seminar next year.
The renowned Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History sponsors a series of 40 seminars across the country each year, in which award-winning historians share their expertise in scholarship and teaching with over 1,200 high school and junior college history teachers. Miller will lead a seminar on the Second World War, which will be hosted by the National World War II Museum in New Orleans.
Miller’s seminar coursework will center on his prizewinning books The Story of World War II and Masters of the Air: America’s Bomber Boys Who Fought the Air War Against Nazi Germany. (The latter is being adapted into an HBO miniseries by Tom Hanks and Steven Spielberg). To supplement his classroom lessons, Miller will guide the class into the vast archives of the WWII Museum and interact with its treasure trove of rare manuscripts, photographs, and artifacts.
In concert with Miller, the 2014 American History Teacher Seminars feature the discipline’s most revered scholars, including David Kennedy on The Great Depression, Gordon Wood on the Era of the American Revolution, Eric Foner on Reconstruction, and Jeremi Suri on U.S. foreign policy. Miller is counted among this upper echelon of American historians, whose accolades include Pulitzer Prizes, National Book Awards, and Bancroft Prizes. These historians, according to the institute, are not only master scholars but also master teachers.
The seminars were established to bring esteemed scholars in touch with the most gifted of their high school and junior college counterparts. Miller lauds this initiative, maintaining that “college professors and high school teachers rarely and unfortunately have opportunities to meet and interact as colleagues and equals.”
Miller’s recognition by the Gilder Lehrman Institute cements his standing as a nationally renowned historian. He continues to expand into the international arena with his invitation to speak at the dedication of the Lewis Mumford Center for Urban Planning in Shanghai, China. Miller established himself as the preeminent authority on Mumford with his groundbreaking biography Lewis Mumford: A Life. Mumford’s work on world cities and urban planning is internationally renowned and Miller’s work on Mumford has been recently translated into Chinese, Japanese, and Korean. Miller’s other publications on cities and military history have also been translated into French, Dutch, Czech, Polish, and Hungarian.