Comments on: Sausage party, or wiener roast? Founding Fathers/Presidential Chic, again! http://www.historiann.com/2011/05/02/sausage-party-or-wiener-roast-founding-fatherspresidential-chic-again/ History and sexual politics, 1492 to the present Mon, 22 Sep 2014 04:23:22 +0000 hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.9.2 By: David Eisenbach http://www.historiann.com/2011/05/02/sausage-party-or-wiener-roast-founding-fatherspresidential-chic-again/comment-page-1/#comment-823197 Sat, 07 May 2011 18:25:43 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/?p=15079#comment-823197 I really like the discussion here Historiann. Great to see so many people interested in history. Please let me know if you would like to write a review and I’ll have the publisher send you a copy. I would love to hear a feminist critique of the book.

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By: Shelley http://www.historiann.com/2011/05/02/sausage-party-or-wiener-roast-founding-fatherspresidential-chic-again/comment-page-1/#comment-821280 Tue, 03 May 2011 15:11:07 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/?p=15079#comment-821280 Larry Flynt???

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By: Comrade PhysioProf http://www.historiann.com/2011/05/02/sausage-party-or-wiener-roast-founding-fatherspresidential-chic-again/comment-page-1/#comment-821140 Tue, 03 May 2011 10:03:52 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/?p=15079#comment-821140 When new papers in my area are published, I always check the references first, to make sure those motherfuckers cited ME!

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By: Tony Grafton http://www.historiann.com/2011/05/02/sausage-party-or-wiener-roast-founding-fatherspresidential-chic-again/comment-page-1/#comment-820977 Tue, 03 May 2011 03:37:17 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/?p=15079#comment-820977 Actually, reading just the footnotes is a bit of a historians’ tradition. When our professional great grand-father, Leopold von Ranke, was getting up there in years, he had his student assistants read him just the footnotes of the new books, so he could see if they had any new material, Historiann, you’re a Rankean!

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By: Historiann http://www.historiann.com/2011/05/02/sausage-party-or-wiener-roast-founding-fatherspresidential-chic-again/comment-page-1/#comment-820959 Tue, 03 May 2011 02:51:09 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/?p=15079#comment-820959 Well, there’s skimming and there’s skimming. I look at the notes first if I’m dubious about a book’s claim to originality, as I was in this case. There’s also skimming of the text, but I usually reserve that for books that interest and impress me enough with the footnotes first.

New Kid–I didn’t notice any pages missing when I looked at it last week and yesterday, but you may be right. In any case, Eisenbach didn’t contradict me about most of the scholars whose work was missing from his notes–he just said it wasn’t fair to look for them in his notes without acknowledging the other GLBTQ scholars whose work he cites.

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By: Comrade PhysioProf http://www.historiann.com/2011/05/02/sausage-party-or-wiener-roast-founding-fatherspresidential-chic-again/comment-page-1/#comment-820955 Tue, 03 May 2011 02:38:58 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/?p=15079#comment-820955 Ah. Your method of skimming a book is to just read the footnotes. That makes a lot of sense.

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By: New Kid on the Hallway http://www.historiann.com/2011/05/02/sausage-party-or-wiener-roast-founding-fatherspresidential-chic-again/comment-page-1/#comment-820954 Tue, 03 May 2011 02:37:30 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/?p=15079#comment-820954 Okay, but when I look at the book using Amazon’s “look inside” feature, it leaves out a couple of pages of the endnotes.

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By: Historiann http://www.historiann.com/2011/05/02/sausage-party-or-wiener-roast-founding-fatherspresidential-chic-again/comment-page-1/#comment-820949 Tue, 03 May 2011 02:19:37 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/?p=15079#comment-820949 Thanks, everyone, for your thoughts.

It’s pretty easy to figure out the scholarship books engage by reading the footnotes. Notorious above outlines the process, and that’s what most of us do when trying to find new books for our courses and books to inform our research. And I did look at all of the notes in the Flynt/Eisenbach book–Amazon’s “look inside” feature offered access to all of the notes. (Per New Kid’s concern, I not only searched them electronically but skimmed them over too.)

Those of you who have noted that Eisenbach and Flynt have different agendas are very correct, I would guess. I truly wonder what that collaborative relationship was like, and how it worked exactly.

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By: Comrade PhysioProf http://www.historiann.com/2011/05/02/sausage-party-or-wiener-roast-founding-fatherspresidential-chic-again/comment-page-1/#comment-820936 Tue, 03 May 2011 01:46:15 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/?p=15079#comment-820936

Do you think it’s dubious to offer opinions of a book one hasn’t read (in a blog post, of course–this is not a peer-reviewed journal) on the basis of the scholarship it engages?

How did you figure out “the scholarship it engages” without reading it?

And BTW, those fucken sausages look BADDE ASSE!!!!!!!!

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By: New Kid on the Hallway http://www.historiann.com/2011/05/02/sausage-party-or-wiener-roast-founding-fatherspresidential-chic-again/comment-page-1/#comment-820850 Mon, 02 May 2011 22:55:30 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/?p=15079#comment-820850 I don’t think it’s at all unfair to judge a book based on its footnotes (keeping in mind the point already made, that trade books face constraints in that respect). But using “search inside” sounds like the search for footnotes was through Amazon’s listing for the book? I don’t think that’s going to net very accurate results. (I could be wrong, of course, on how the search was carried out.) Even Google books isn’t going to net very accurate results unless the whole book is up there, which a book this new isn’t going to be.

It does sound like Eisenbach and Flynt are coming at this from slightly different perspectives, and claiming to be breaking new ground is rather obnoxious. It is galling if they genuinely haven’t (in the book as opposed to in Flynt’s comments) acknowledged previous scholarship (but again, without looking at a hard copy of the book, I’m not sure that’s the case). But I do think popular histories have a value that is distinct from the archivally-based original scholarship, and while sure, people could go read the primary research-based scholarship that Eisenbach and Flynt relied upon, face it – most people who are not professional historians the field in question won’t. And having had to learn to read/write a whole different genre has given me a different perspective on historical writing, that reminded me how difficult even really good scholarly writing can be for those who aren’t trained in the field.

Which is to say that scholarship based on archival resources is one extremely worthy variety of scholarship, but I think I’d quibble with saying it’s the worthiest. It depends on what your goal in writing is, and who you want to reach. (I can’t say for certain what either of those are in the case of the book at issue, but if Larry Flynt’s involved, I can hardly think it’s intended to reach specialists in the field, or even professional historians at all.)

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