Origins: Current Events in Historical Perspective

Origins: Current Events in Historical Perspective connects history with today. A project of the Public History Initiative and eHistory in the History Department at the Ohio State University and Miami University, Origins produces several features that analyze a pressing issue in a broader, deeper context. Origins’ main articles focus on the long-term trends and patterns, search for the foundations of today’s events, and explore the often complicated nature of a particular current event. The final goal of Origins is to make us all more informed, engaged citizens. As the American philosopher John Dewey wrote, “History which is not brought down close to the actual scene of events leaves a gap.”
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Looking Back at Hiroshima

The atomic age began between heartbeats at 8:15 am on August 6, 1945, when the Japanese city of Hiroshima was leveled by an atomic bomb. Three days later, the US dropped a second bomb on Nagasaki, marking the first time humanity broke atoms in anger. Continue Reading

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The History of the Periodic Table

In 1869, Dmitri Mendeleev delivered a full paper to the Russian Chemical Society spelling out the most significant aspect of his system: that characteristics of the elements recur at a periodic interval as a function of their atomic weight. This was the first iteration of the periodic law. Continue Reading

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The People Power Revolution

In February 1986, hundreds of thousands of Filipinos gathered on Epifanio de los Santos Avenue to protest President Ferdinand Marcos and his claim that he had won reelection over Corazon Aquino. Continue Reading

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The Death of Franco

On November 20, 1975, Spanish General Francisco Franco died in bed, signaling the unceremonious end of one of Europe’s longest dictatorships. Continue Reading

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Migration and Mobility: Yesterday and Today

With more than 80 million forcibly displaced people in the world and another 260-plus million international migrants, humans seem to be on the move. History allows us a glimpse at the motivations and predicaments people face today and in the future. Continue Reading

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