Accessible Navigation.

Walter LaFeber - September 09, 2010

Andrew Tisch and James Tisch Distinguished University Professor Emeritus, Cornell University

"The American Century: Its Beginnings - and End?"

8:00 PM Thursday, September 09, 2010
University Theatre

Author of the path-breaking New American Empire:  An Interpretation of American Expansion, 1860-1898 (1963; thirty-fifth anniversary edition, 1998) and many other major books about American foreign policy, Walter LaFeber has been one of the country's most prolific and accomplished historians.  As an expert on the historical formation of the American empire, now experiencing on of its most prolonged and financially ruinous crises, he has few peers and no superiors.

You may also listen to a podcast of the lecture here.

"Reconsidering the Roots of the American Empire"

3:40 PM Thursday, September 09, 2010
Gallagher Business Building 122

You are cordially invited to attend a seminar with Walter LaFeber, who earned a Ph.D. in history at the University of Wisconsin in 1959. He studied there with Fred Harvey Harrington, one of the giant figures, along with William Appleman Williams, in that History department’s glory days as the leading academic institution for studying the economic roots of American foreign policy. Hired to teach at Cornell in 1959, Professor LaFeber swiftly became a giant in his own right. His brilliant first book, The New American Empire: An Interpretation of American Expansion, 1860-1898 (1963) won the Albert J. Beveridge Prize of the American Historical Association and immediately established him as a major new voice in the field. In The New Empire, he offered an intellectually scintillating account of the Spanish-American War’s deep historical background, explaining that conflict as the culmination of American policies reaching back to the 1860s. In the light of Professor LaFeber’s path breaking book, the Spanish-American War could no longer be understood as the starting point of American imperialism, but as an acceleration of a process long underway. Major publications of his have appeared in a steady stream ever since. They include:

America, Russia, and the Cold War (1966; 10th ed., 2007)

The Panama Canal: The Crisis in Historical Perspective (1978; 2cd ed., 1989)

Inevitable Revolutions: The United States in Central America (1983; 2cd ed., 1992)

The American Age: U.S. Foreign Policy Abroad and at Home Since 1750 (1989; 2cd ed., 1994)

The American Search for Opportunity, 1865-1913 (1993; 2cd ed., 2011)

The Clash: U.S.-Japan Relations Throughout History (1997; awarded the Bancroft Prize)

Michael Jordan and the New Global Capitalism (1999; 2cd ed., 2002)

The Deadly Bet: LBJ, Vietnam, and the 1968 Election (2005)

As an expert on the historical formation of the American empire, now experiencing one of its most prolonged and financially ruinous crises, he has few peers and no superiors.