As our faithful and much-appreciated readers have no doubt noticed, we resident historians here in this corner of the internet are struggling to maintain our footing on the ground of history as the swirling currents of the present threaten to swamp us all. We are doing the best we can. Indeed, it seems to me, looking at all the posts that have gone up since the election, that collectively we are doing a very fine job of writing our way through this as historians.
Frankly, I’m having a little bit of trouble with the whole “objectivity” thing right now. I don’t mean “view from nowhere” stuff – there is no such thing. But even that Haskellian objectivity that is not neutrality is a real strain. And I’m damn tired. And the road ahead is long. I know: take a number.
But may I also take some suggestions?
If you could afford to subscribe to just one or two newspapers, or just one magazine, just one journal, one or two outlets doing invaluable work as part of the free press of a free society, what titles would you recommend? What staff writers or freelancers would you support with your subscription dollars or newsstand purchases? What pillars of the fourth estate most need shoring up right now?
I intend to subscribe to a couple of newspapers, and maybe a couple of magazines as well. I put a post up at my own blog this morning with some of my own thoughts on one possible candidate. (Saving you a click: The New Yorker, and I probably won’t subscribe, though I’m kind of torn.) But I’d like to know what you all think. Who did you read during this election that you want to make sure you can keep reading? Whose work did you rely on? What news outlet’s reporting was brave and true and needs to continue?
“Let us tenderly and kindly cherish, therefore, the means of knowledge. Let us dare to read, think, speak, and write.” Well, while I am always up for that dare, I want to also kindly cherish the means of knowledge by supporting our free press with such means as I have at my disposal. If you were going to subscribe to two, or three, or four publications, which ones would you choose?