At Cliopatria, Claire Potter sadly reports on the passing of Charles Tilly, a giant of French history. “Memorials to Credit and Blame”, excerpted in The American Interest ( May/June 2008 ) from an upcoming book, is worth perusing for its brief reflections on the personal life of an academic history and for his analysis of the Hermann Monument and Sacré Coeur. However, he ends on a cautionary note:

We should therefore be very careful when asking authorities to officially sanction our assignments of credit and blame. One day, for sure, there will be some kind of memorial for the Iraq war, and perhaps the Afghanistan war as well. We had better be careful how we design those monuments and the stories of credit and blame they invariably will tell. We can only hope that, when all is said and done, we will build and tell stories about those monuments in a way that creates consensus instead of separation. It is not always easy or obvious how to do that.

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