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Nation Topics - History


News and Features

Ariel Dorfman

Returning to Chile decades after Allende’s death, I was no longer a soldier of the revolution. What changed?

Gandhi and Hermann Kallenbach reunited, June 1937

Why was Joseph Lelyveld’s history of Gandhi’s years in South Africa attacked by India’s Hindu right?

Children at Foehrenwald Displaced Persons Camp in Bavaria, Germany, 1948

Tara Zahra explains why orphaned children held a special grip on Europe’s postwar imagination.

Francis Fukuyama

The Origins of Political Order, a work of total world history, pits the old Fukuyama against the new.

Union soldiers surrounding the Dictator, a 13-inch siege mortar cannon

Too many Americans have fallen prey to narratives that erase the role of slavery in the war’s origins and legacy.

Jacqueline Kennedy

The former first lady speaks from beyond the grave—and shows how far we’ve come (and haven’t).

Poet Joseph Brodsky (seated, right) in exile in the Russian North, 1964

Why did different segments of the Soviet population experience Khrushchev’s reforms in radically different ways?

Protesters in Chile

Chile and the United States offer contrasting models of how to react to a collective trauma.

Jorge Castañeda at his home in Mexico City, November 2004

In Mañana Forever? Jorge Castañeda chronicles the growth of the middle class to argue that Mexico is not a failed state.

Capes, torches, secret meetings! Adam Goodheart’s 1861 tells the story of the unyielding idealism awakened by the Civil War.


Americans today are a lot more familiar with his presidency than they think they are.

December 3, 2014

Twenty-five years ago, Eric Alterman reminded us that the so-called “experts” were wrong about the Berlin Wall. Some things haven’t changed much.

November 12, 2014

“Socialism is inseparable from democracy,” The Nation wrote in its 1989 editorial.

November 10, 2014

In his new book, John Dean finally offers definitive answers to the questions “What did he know, and when did he know it?”

August 14, 2014

The quagmire of the Vietnam War was built on a “queasy foundation of fact and myth.”

July 31, 2014

"About nothing does the mob forget so quickly as about war."

July 28, 2014

Reflections on the meaning of the French Revolution in the shadow of Adolf Hitler.

July 14, 2014

The Nation’s predictive capacities were pretty mixed.

June 28, 2014

The first modern war created the modern Nation.

June 16, 2014

‘Wide and luminous’ or ‘grid-locked and addled on speed’?

May 22, 2014