James E. McWilliams

James McWilliams is an Ingram professor of history at Texas State University-San Marcos.


Up or Out in the Colonies

Sex and the Eighteenth-Century Man: Massachusetts and the History of Sexuality in America. Once upon a time in America, sex was everybody’s business. Consider the 18th-century Massachusetts couple of Joel and Susannah Richardson. During their open divorce proceedings, Susannah saw … Read More


Drop the Bomb!

Readers of the gushing Austin American-Statesman could be forgiven for thinking differently, but other people actually ran the 2006 New York City Marathon besides Lance Armstrong. Lance might have been ensconced by a motorcycle brigade, personal pacers, and every amenity … Read More


Stand and Deliver

Deliver the Vote: A History of Election Fraud, an American Political Tradition—1742-2004 Even before the first absentee ballots arrived, the nation’s legal guns were cocked in anticipation of a volley of lawsuits after this November’s midterm elections. While in most … Read More


Sweet, Civilized, and Sapped

The Forgotten Expedition, 1804-1805:The Louisiana Purchase Journals of Dunbar and Hunter If professional historians have accomplished anything in the last generation, it has been to bring an environmental sensibility to the forefront of historical analysis. This has been fertile change. … Read More


Deal or No Deal

The art of scouting for rare books in the Age of the Internet

Should you have been one of the handful of rare book lovers to have patronized the Austin Book and Paper Show last March, you’d have encountered what the real estate folks call a buyers’ market. So much so that as … Read More


Old King Coal

By James e. McWilliams Few things make coal companies happier than high gas prices and the occasional blackout. Complete power losses, in fact, really fire them up. A case in point would be the blackouts that rolled across Texas last … Read More


The Purist’s Dilemma

The Omnivore’s Dilemma: Here are just a few of the things that best-selling author Michael Pollan is worrying about these days: the ratio of omega-3 to omega-6 oils in his meat, the “ethical implications” of organic asparagus from Argentina, the … Read More


Muddy Waters

River Reflections: A Collection of River Writings Given that a serious reader might read a book a week, a rough calculation leads to the troubling reality that most of us will have time in our busy lives to conquer about … Read More



Brokeback Island

And you actually think there are appropriate limits to abortion rights? . . . That some unborn lives are more valuable than others? . . . What about first trimester fetuses? . . . Vegetative geriatrics? . . . . … Read More