Mummies, Game of Thrones, black history, pointless battles, and historical “burns.”

The New York Times Disunion blog today features a story on the very forgotten and ultimately pointless battle down in South Texas that ended the Civil War 150 years ago.

The books that HBO’s Game of Thrones are based on were written with the War of the Roses and other European historical events as inspirations, but here is an interesting piece that draws a parallel between one of its storylines and that of Reconstruction in the US. I’m sure many of us had already started to draw that connection, and I am sure it must be what Snoop Dogg had in mind. Right?

Conservatives have been complaining about the “liberal” aspects of the AP history course and exam, but is the real problem with it is that it’s too centrist?

So there is a supermarket in France that just happens to be on top of the mass grave of medieval corpses. I could make some Poltergeist jokes here, but I’ll just let it go.

Speaking of the Dead, this study of 259 mummies lends credence to belief that Egyptian rulers were highly incestuous. Again, I’ll spare you the jokes.

And speaking of mummies, it turns out that the animal/pet mummification business in ancient Egypt was a massive scam.

Here’s a good opinion piece from the History News Network on how history teaches us the dangers of rigid ideologies, ultimately connecting it to the uncompromising political culture that seems to plague us now. Sadly, I would argue that there is connection between that story and this one.

There has been a strong backlash against that Bauerlein essay about prof/student engagement. Personally, I feel that many of the responses have been way too defensive, but here is a productive one in the Washington Post.

Taylor Branch’s amazing work on the Civil Rights era seems to be finally coming to the screen in the form of an HBO miniseries. The most interesting thing about this is that Ta-neshi Coates will be involved, and that there already seem to be some creative and interpretive disagreements.

The Smithsonian is on-track to open their new National Museum of African American History and Culture in 2016. “The exhibits will trace the history of slavery, segregation, civil rights and African-Americans’ achievements in the arts, entertainment, sports, the military and the wider culture.” Bravo!

And lastly, here is a good list of the 12 best “burns” in history. No doubt some of these are apocryphal, but who doesn’t love a good retort that doesn’t involve the “Jerk Store?” (You Seinfeld fans will get that).

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