The National Association of Scholars (NAS), which has done valuable work on the College Board’s attempt to impose a leftist national U.S. history curriculum through its Advanced Placement (AP) U.S. History course (APUSH), has kept its eye on the ball. NAS just released a new report on another new AP course – this time AP European History (APEH). If we thought the College Board had repented of its leftist sins and returned to traditional, unbiased history instruction, we should have known better.
The College Board issued its highly revisionist APUSH framework in 2014. That framework presented American history as a dark, depressing story of conflict and oppression. After months of protests by scholars, state legislators and education officials, and parents, the College Board finally withdrew the APUSH framework and replaced it with one less overtly biased (although some commentators noted that problems remained, including retention of the slanted textbooks and teacher training).
But the College Board assured the concerned stakeholders that all was now well, and that they needn’t spend any more time scrutinizing the AP program or, worse, looking for an alternative.
But the leopard’s spots remained unchanged. As related in withering detail by David Randall of NAS in his report entitled The Disappearing Continent, European history has now undergone the same type of leftist revisionism previously applied to U.S. history.
Among Randall’s findings is that the new APEH framework not only downplays the influence of religion in European history but “presents religion throughout as an instrument of power rather than as an autonomous sphere of European history.” APEH students will learn nothing about medieval Christianity or the tenets of the Reformation. So determined is the College Board to excise religion from European history that it even manages to discuss the movement to abolish slavery without mentioning its religious foundations.
The new framework also gives short shrift to the history of Great Britain . . .
Jane Robbins is an attorney and a senior fellow with the American Principles Project.