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History professor featured in PBS documentary, 'The War of 1812'

August 19, 2011

Donald Fixico, Distinguished Foundation Professor of History at Arizona State University, is a featured interview in the upcoming documentary, "The War of 1812" to air at 9 p.m., Oct. 10, on Eight, Arizona PBS.

Information about the film is available here.

Fixico, the author of "Rethinking American Indian History and Treaties with American Indians," discusses the critical role the Shawnee war chief Tecumseh played in the war. 

"As Tecumseh grew up," he explains in the film, "he sees much of his family, his father and his older brother, die in battle. He sees himself a person who has take charge, because there’s really no one else to take charge at this time, in his life."

The War of 1812 was a small but bitter war – that forged the destiny of a continent. For two and a half years, Americans fought against the British, Canadian colonists, and native nations. In the years to come, the War of 1812 would be celebrated in some places and essentially forgotten in others.

But it was a war that was worth remembering – a struggle that threatened the existence of Canada, then divided the United States so deeply that the nation almost broke apart. 

Some of its battles and heroes became almost legendary, yet its blunders and cowards were just as prominent. The film shows how the glories of history become enshrined in the national heart – how failures are quickly forgotten – how inconvenient truths are ignored forever.