July 4, 2023 marks the 247th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence and the birth of the United States. In three short years, we will be marking the 250th anniversary of these events.
How are historians thinking about the American Revolution for 2026? What are they discussing when it comes to the 250th anniversary of the United States’ founding?
Lindsay M. Chervinsky, Ronald Angelo Johnson, and Kariann Akemi Yokota join us to answer these questions. All three guests are historians of the American Revolutionary Era who research the American Revolution from different perspectives.
About the Show
Ben Franklin’s World is a podcast about early American history.
It is a show for people who love history and for those who want to know more about the historical people and events that have impacted and shaped our present-day world.
Each episode features a conversation with a historian who helps us shed light on important people and events in early American history.
Ben Franklin’s World is a production of Colonial Williamsburg Innovation Studios.
We are joined by three historians who can help us better understand how historians are thinking about the American Revolution for 2026. Lindsay M. Chervinsky studies the American Revolution from the vantage point of early presidential history. Ronald Angelo Johnson is a diplomatic historian who investigates the American Revolution within the broader Age of Revolutions, which the American Revolution helped begin. And Kariann Akemi Yokota is a cultural historian who studies the American Revolution from an international perspective.
During our conversation, our guest historians reveal how they define and think about the American Revolution as an event; Why historians are advocating for an inclusive and accurate history of the American Revolution for 2026; And how our guests are thinking about the legacy of the American Revolution nearly 250 years later.
What You’ll Discover
- The different ways historians define the American Revolution
- Why many historians interpret the Revolution as an event based on power and not just war
- How culture did not change as quickly as politics in the new United States
- What historians think about the year 2026 as the best date to use to commemorate the 250th anniversary of the American Revolution
- The importance of telling an inclusive and accurate history of the American Revolution
- How opposing views about history add to our understanding of the American Revolution
- The ways that including wider, more inclusive range of sources and stories, expand historians’ understandings of the American Revolution
- Why 2026 should be about commemoration, celebration, and remembrance
- Why defeats in the War for Independence were just as important as victories in defining the Revolution
- How historians are thinking about the legacy of the American Revolution in relation to the 2026 anniversary
- Where our guest historians will be spending their time during the 250h Anniversary of the American Revolution
Links to People, Places, and Publications
- Lindsay M. Chervinsky
- The Cabinet: George Washington and the Creation of an American Institution
- Ronald Angelo Johnson
- Diplomacy in Black and White: John Adams, Toussaint Louverture, and Their Atlantic World Alliance
- Kariann Akemi Yokota
- Unbecoming British: How Revolutionary America Became a Postcolonial Nation
- “Expanding Our Perspective of the Declaration of Independence” Blog Post
- “Thomas Jefferson and Frederick Douglass: On Freedom” Video
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- Episode 052: Ronald A. Johnson, Early United States-Haitian Diplomacy
- Episode 245: Celebrating the Fourth
- Episode 277: Whose Fourth of July?
- Episode 279: Lindsay M Chervinsky, The Cabinet: Creation of an American Institution
- Episode 306: The Horse’s Tail: Revolution & Memory in Early New York City
- Episode 332: Experiences of Revolution, Part 1: Occupied Philadelphia
- Episode 333: Experiences of Revolution, Part 2: Disruptions in Yorktown
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