Magazine June 03, 2019, Issue

The Midwest’s Not-So-Hidden History

Clouds pass over a farm outside Dubuque, Iowa, July 26, 2018. (Joshua Roberts/Reuters)
The Heartland: An American History, by Kristin L. Hoganson (Penguin Press, 432 pp., $30)

‘Everything you know about x is wrong” has always been a hit with the reading public. Take Columbus. On Columbus Day, the righteous will complain that students aren’t taught the ugly truth about the Great Admiral. They will push this point, as they do every year, as if Howard Zinn’s People’s History of the United States hadn’t scuttled Columbus’s reputation decades ago. (As if, even before that, Ogden Nash hadn’t written the damning couplet “Once upon a time there was an Italian, / And some people thought he was a rapscallion!”) The ugly truth about Columbus is old news —

This article appears as “The Mythical Midwest?” in the June 3, 2019, print edition of National Review.

In This Issue

Against Socialism

Books, Arts & Manners


The Week

The Week

Don’t tear up your tickets just yet: We hear the Kentucky Derby loser is appealing to the Ninth Circuit.

Going Postal

Bernie Sanders tweeted a hot new idea: ‘Did you know that from 1911-1967, Americans could bank at their local post office?’


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