Exit Interview with Hilary Green

Exit Interview with Hilary Green

What has been the most rewarding part of your time with Muster?

It has been rewarding to introduce the amazing work of more diverse Civil War era scholars to more diverse audiences of academic, K-12, and non-academic audiences. As such, I have been able to see more people engage with their work while simultaneously see collaborations and research blossom into fuller pieces.

How have you seen Muster change and grow in the past three years?

It has grown in terms of the pieces developed but also how Muster became a venue to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic and new realities of conferencing, closure of archives, and politicalization of the Civil War era. Some pieces directly responded to current events, including a roundup of pieces contextualizing the failed January 6, 2021coup d’etat, monument removals, Civil War soldiers’ support animals, and even the ethics of colorizing historical photographs.

Both African American and white descendants have had a place to develop pieces showcasing their unique family histories for wider audiences. For instance, Holly Pinheiro’s interview with Michelle Mardsen, a descendant of the Rothwell family explored in The Families Civil War (UGA Press, 2022) was one of our most popular ones.

Teaching pedagogical posts have remained a constant presence, especially after COV19-19. But I truly marveled at seeing Muster posts cited in published works. These short pieces are quality public scholarship. As such Muster has remained a go to place for accessible Civil War Era scholarship that complements the articles, roundtables, and reviews of the JCWE.

What projects are you looking forward to exploring now that you are cycling off your tenure with the JCWE?

I am currently in the last stages of a second book manuscript exploring how African American communities remembered and commemorated the Civil War from 1863 to the present. It centers the ordinary memory work of men, women, and children from their porches to their churches and schools to the reenactment battlefield. Afterwards, I will develop a third book building on my campus history work at the University of Alabama and tell the collective biography of the enslaved campus laborers and their legacy in Reconstruction era Alabama.

What is one piece of advice that you would offer your successor?

While you are building on the past, remember to develop your vision for Muster through every post, contributor, and desired audience. Be encouraging. Be supportive of authors at all stages of their respective career. And be mindful of your vision for Civil War era scholarship cultivated through Muster.

What is one piece of advice that you would give a junior scholar who is thinking about writing a piece for Muster?

You should never be afraid to pitch a Muster post. With a broad readership, you will get invaluable feedback and exposure. These short pieces often serve as the first thought to larger projects and can be beneficial.

Hilary N. Green

Hilary N. Green is the James B. Duke Professor of Africana Studies at Davidson College. She previously worked in the Department of Gender and Race Studies at the University of Alabama where she developed the Hallowed Grounds Project. She earned her M.A. in History from Tufts University in 2003, and Ph.D. in History from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 2010. Her research and teaching interests include the intersections of race, class, and gender in African American history, the American Civil War, Reconstruction, as well as Civil War memory, African American education, and the Black Atlantic. She is the author of Educational Reconstruction: African American Schools in the Urban South, 1865-1890 (Fordham, 2016).

2 Replies to “Exit Interview with Hilary Green”

  1. Ms. Green thank you for your leadership and for the opportunity to share my discussion Dr. Pinheiro. As a genealogist studying this era I have found this journal very insightful. I look forward to reading your next book.

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