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The Inclusive Historian’s Handbook

American Association for State and Local History (AASLH) and the National Council on Public History (NCPH)

Updated Interpretation and Education

Overview

The Inclusive Historian’s Handbook supports inclusive and equity-focused historical work in public settings by:

  • Sharing a knowledge base that invites more people to engage in history projects
  • Providing concrete examples of how to make history work more relevant
  • Centering equity, inclusivity, diversity, and public service
  • Offering accessible windows into the many ways public historians work

Authored by field experts, each entry combines practical advice with critical reflections and telling examples. Topics range from food history to historic house museums, and from urban renewal to outdoor history museums.

Some ways to use the Handbook:

  • Share it with community partners and use the readings to shape collaborations.
  • Discuss it with administrators, collaborators, colleagues, or boards of trustees who may not fully grasp the importance of equity, inclusion, and service in historical work or who may be unsure about how to approach these issues. For additional help conveying the importance of equity and inclusion in historical work, see the Foundations of Interpretation.
  • Assign selections to students or interns. Discuss ways they can implement the ideas and recommendations in their careers.
  • Engage in personal reflection on one’s own work. Note areas for improvement or ideas to bring to current or future projects.
  • Read essays as a team when embarking on a new project, and seek support when interpreting critical issues and hot topics.
  • Include it as continuing education with staff and volunteers, especially when paired with self-study interpretive learning tools like the Curiosity: A Fundamental Skillset of Audience Centered Interpretation hub.
  • Mine it for additional resources. Follow the links and read the suggested books and articles.
  • Contribute by writing an essay that fills gaps in content.

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