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Editor's Message

Marc Jason Gilbert


     This issue features a Forum and overall focus on Latin America in world history. As Forum guest editor Rick Warner points out it is not only a shame, but a grave failing of the field, that Latin American history, which has played a major role in the evolution of world history (from the Columbian Exchange to Plantation and World Systems), is so often slighted or under represented in world history texts, survey courses, and lesson plans. The essays gathered by Warner are proof of the need to redress this situation, as are several related featured articles and reviews, including a review essay by Scott Eastman. If there are any doubts as to whether sufficient instructional resources exist to address this issue in the classroom, it is hoped that the digital resources guide included in the Forum will help dispel them.

     Other featured articles and reviews insure that, as is the nature of this journal, there is ample world history content and pedagogy reaching beyond the subject of the Forum that will be useful for research and at all levels of instruction. These include an active learning strategy developed by Jeremy Greene and an intimate method devised by David Hertzel to address one of the most pressing issues of this day and also past eras of history, the migrant/ancestral identity experience. Wynn Gadkar-Wilcox investigates Vietnamese historians views of their American War (1961–1975), which had so great an impact on the course of their own and global history. In so doing, he illuminates ways both researchers and students of Vietnam and the wider world can explore the evolution of national histories and national identities.

     Among the featured articles is an essay by a young American scholar, Gleb Tsipursky, which, in its conception alone, will warm the hearts of all those committed to the field of World history. Since the founding of the World History Association and this journal many years ago, world historians have been engaged in an effort to assist non-World historians, principally historians of Europe and Western Civilization, in the teaching of world history, a task for which most Western specialists have little training, but who have been asked in ever-increasing numbers to teach world history survey courses as part of globalizing/internationalizing curriculum initiatives world-wide. By seeking to assist world historians, many of whom are not well-grounded in European history, to improve the delivery of the Western historical record and traditions, Tsipursky heralds the maturation of the field of world history. In the classroom at least, world history is no longer the stepchild of historical studies. Classrooms are increasingly managed by generation of instructors whose own education has been shaped by more expansive world views and a greater awareness of world historical process than that of their predecessors. As Tsipursky reminds us, Western and World History are not competing fields, but complimentary; a proposition to which World History Connected has and remains deeply committed.

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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