Over the course of the past 18 months, we’ve heard the phrase “Make America great again.” Used as a campaign slogan to excite the base and incite distrust, the phrase begs questions in response: When did America cease to be a great nation? What attributes define a great nation?

Many feel that in our current moment a sense of common national identity and a shared sense of the common purpose is well beyond reach. We believe Americans need to reflect on the stories of the past and present that address the long debate over America as ‘mixing bowl’ or ‘melting pot’. In the daily work of making America, many Americans value an inclusive sense of national identity.

Ohio Humanities seeks articles that explore those moments when American greatness was revealed as the realization of American ideals – or as a façade for the exercise of unprincipled power. We are particularly interested in pieces that focus on Ohio or Ohioans and their role in moving America toward a better place or revealing the rank hypocrisy of the American sense of national greatness. Articles might include a reflection on Auden’s “Age of Anxiety,” an exploration of civil disobedience, the campaigns of Ohioans running for national office, profiles of individuals whose actions define or defy the theme.

Authors are encouraged to submit one-page proposals for articles, essays, or poems no later than August 25. Deadline for final submissions is September 18. Proposals may be submitted to ohc@ohiohumanities.org.