January 6 and the Politics of History

January 6 and the Politics of History cover using two speech bubbles to frame the title and author information

William Sturkey


Edited by Jim Downs

Jim DownsStephanie McCurryJoanne B. FreemanElizabeth HintonJill LeporeWilliam Sturkey and Julian E. Zelizer

An enlightening, history-informed conversation about the January 6 insurrection

On January 6, 2021, more than two thousand rioters stormed the doors of the U.S. Capitol building in Washington, D.C., hoping to interrupt the peaceful transfer of power from former president Donald Trump to his successor, Joseph Biden. The deaths, property damage, and vicious rampage that ensued were witnessed on live television as an unprecedented attack on the democratic process and those who strive to protect it.

As an installment of UGA Press’s History in the Headlines series, this book offers a rich discussion between highly respected scholars on the historical backdrop and context for contemporary issues from the headlines. In addition to the historical context, this conversation demonstrates how historians speak to one another about contentious topics and how they contribute in meaningful ways to the public’s understanding of momentous events. This volume focuses on the historical context of the January 6 attack and employs a free-flowing conversation style that allows the historians a more unconventional format. The participants discuss if—and if so, how—historians should engage in public debates and what that engagement means to their roles as academic authorities in the public.

Book link here.