About

Erstwhile       adjective 1. Past, previous, before       adverb 1. Formerly

As both an adjective and an adverb, “erstwhile” can describe not only what but also how. This versatility in relating the past symbolizes a key commitment of our blog. As a diverse community of emerging historical scholars, we strive to practice versatility and to showcase the diverse historical specialties of the graduate student body at the University of Colorado at Boulder.

Founded in the spring of 2014 by six CU graduate students, Erstwhile is a collaborative space in which American intellectual, cultural, labor, Native American, and environmental historians share ideas. We believe that these subfields communicate with one another in ways that are essential for promoting thoughtful conversation about the past, the present, and the historical profession. While many of our weekly posts relate to current events—within both academic history and the wider world—we also prepare reflective writing on research topics.  These have included the nature of the exotic in American entertainment, the meaning of place, social visions for the future, legacies of environmental change, conflicts of free speech in the politics of professional sports, and pressing historiographical and pedagogical questions. Watch for our monthly “links round-up” for a selection of links to the month’s most intriguing history-related web content. We hope you will subscribe, comment, share, and enjoy our collective conversation. Please view our “Staff” page for more information on our editorial board members.

Thank you, from the Erstwhile-ians

n.b. While the editorial staff reviews all posts, the opinions expressed in each piece are those of the author alone.

Old Main, 1877, Joseph Sturdevant, Photographer, University 754, Archives, University of Colorado at Boulder Libraries.

Old Main, the first building ever built at the University of Colorado at Boulder, with the Flatirons in the distance. Photo by Joseph B. Sturdevant, 1877. University of Colorado Boulder Library Archives.

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