I take an evil pleasure in news stories that round up opinion among pop historians. Here's one that includes David Donald, the mass-market Lincoln biographer:
Clinton memoir raises both hopes and doubts among historians
In this subgenre of news, the pop culture mavens we call "historians" come across as articulate and cultured as your average 21-year-old rock band drummer:
So I'm interested in how he brings a truly sophisticated sense of history to his book. I'd like to see him bring that to how he thinks his judgments affected the direction of both domestic and foreign policy.
Dude! I'm so impressed, man.
The questions a bona fide history lover would ask Clinton (the premise of this article) would probably be the same for Jeff Davis or Abe Lincoln.
(1) How did you make major decisions?
(2) What documents or records will give the most complete picture of events after you die?
(3) How is this memoir different from one that you might write 30 years from now?
(4) What broad areas of importance have you put "out of bounds" for security or personal reasons?
(5) What were your assessments of domestic and foreign political leaders?
(*) As a history reader who became a history maker, are there cautions or warnings you would now give to fellow history readers?
This type of article will continue to amuse as long as there are reporters impressed by best-selling history writers and as long as they enjoy recording pop history baby talk.