This article suggests that the gap between professional historians and the public has grown during the past twenty-five years and that both the public and the profession have suffered as a result. It suggests further that historians in academic and nonacademic settings need to overcome institutional barriers that prevent them from providing better service to the public. Just as seeing-eye dogs guide sightless people to their destinations, professionally trained historians should be leading the public to a more promising future, thanks to their ability to separate objectively determined historical facts from self-serving, often ideological opinions and fantasies.

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