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Editor's Message

Marc Jason Gilbert

     The confluence of commemorations of the Civil War, the First and Second World Wars, and the Vietnam War is a reminder of the significance of the military in world history. Fortunately, the growth of world history over the past 30 years runs parallel to the expansion of military in terms of methodology and scope of interest. The February 2015 issue of World History Connected offers evidence of the richness of scholarship and teaching that is the result of these mutual developments. Its Forum section throws fresh light on the role of the military in Mongol, Ottoman and Trans-Atlantic Empires and upends the assumption that the victors always those who shape the history of wars.

     The Forum is followed by further articles of value in terms of both scholarship and teaching methodology. Sharika Crawford demonstrates that the role Africa and African soldiers of the British and French Empires during the Second World War are a means to incorporate Africa and Africans into the modern world history course that goes beyond the Scramble for Africa. She also argues that by identifying African wartime experiences in classroom coverage of the Second World War serves to raise subsequent questions regarding African ex-servicemen's postwar experiences and whether these veterans affected nationalist movements in the 1950s and 1960s. Howard Spodek shows how student efforts to collect oral history interviews, especially from those who have experienced displace by war, are a superior means of "Doing World History." John Maunu supplies an annotated digital resource for examining writing on military affairs from ancient times to 1450, which is but the first of several such resources that will appear in World History Connected in the coming years.

     In the near future, issues of World History Connected will continue to explore dimensions of human conflict, such as the First World War, but also address more pacific themes, including religious conversion, port cities, and the place of food in world history.

     World History Connected welcomes the submission of articles and reviews on these and any other subject that can advance research and teaching in the still evolving field of world history.

Marc Jason Gilbert, Editor

Hawai'i Pacific University

Marc Jason Gilbert is Professor of History and National Endowment for the Humanities Endowed Chair in World History at Hawai'i Pacific University. He can be reached at

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