Marc Selverstone

Associate Professor and Chair of the Presidential Recordings Program

Fast Facts

  • Chair of the Presidential Recordings Program
  • Won the Bernath Book Prize for Constructing the Monolith: The United States, Great Britain, and International Communism, 1945-1950.
  • Expertise on John F. Kennedy, Lyndon Johnson, Richard Nixon, the Vietnam War


Areas Of Expertise

  • Foreign Affairs
  • American Defense and Security
  • Politics
  • The Presidency

Marc Selverstone is an associate professor in presidential studies at the Miller Center and chair of the Center’s Presidential Recordings Program. He earned a B.A. in philosophy from Trinity College (CT), a Master’s in international affairs from Columbia University, and a Ph.D. in history from Ohio University. A historian of the Cold War, he is the author of Constructing the Monolith: The United States, Great Britain, and International Communism, 1945-1950 (Harvard), which won the Stuart L. Bernath Book Prize from the Society for Historians of American Foreign Relations.

As chair of the Recordings Program, Selverstone edits the secret White House tapes of Presidents John F. Kennedy, Lyndon B. Johnson, and Richard M. Nixon. He is the general editor of The Presidential Recordings Digital Edition, the primary online portal for transcripts of the tapes, published by the University of Virginia Press.

Selverstone’s broader scholarship focuses on presidents and presidential decisionmaking, particularly during the 1960s and 1970s. He has written for journals and edited volumes on the Kennedy presidency, the Cold War, and the American war in Vietnam. He also edits the Miller Center’s “Studies on the Presidency” series (Virginia), and is the editor of A Companion to John F. Kennedy (Wiley-Blackwell). He is currently at work on The Kennedy Withdrawal: Camelot and the American Commitment to Vietnam, under contract with Harvard University Press.


Marc Selverstone News Feed

Miller Center scholar Marc Selverstone recounts for the Washington Post how 50 years ago this week, the Senate reclaimed its power to control US military conflicts.
With the United States now engaged in what observers have described as a “forever war” across multiple theaters, it is time for Congress to reassert itself and conduct rigorous hearings on the scope, rationale and wisdom of these military activities. At the very least, it should revisit the legislation that authorized them more than 15 years ago and establish a positive consensus for their continuation. Endless or not, this war must have the affirmation and support of the American people and their elected representatives. Perhaps this is one lesson of Vietnam we can all agree on.
Marc Selverstone Washington Post
Lynn Novick, who co-directed the 18-part documentary series “The Vietnam War” with Ken Burns, joined English professor Steve Cushman and associate professor Marc Selverstone, chair of the Miller Center’s Presidential Recordings Program.
Marc Selverstone UVA Today
Novick helped kick off the Virginia Film Festival at UVA with a screening of “Things Fall Apart,” an 84-minute episode of the documentary, and then discussed it afterward with the Miller Center's Marc Selverstone.
Marc Selverstone Richmond Times-Dispatch
“We’re going to screen ‘The Vietnam War’ and [Lynn Novick is] in for a moderated discussion with Marc Selverstone, professor at the Miller Center at the University of Virginia, one of the top presidential think tanks,” festival director Jody Kielbasa said. “This should be a really fascinating discussion about the advent of the war and the impact it had, not only [on] our veterans but on our country.”
Marc Selverstone WTOP
"Marc Selverstone and Ken Hughes of the Miller Center at UVA provided vital guidance and legwork in finding key bits of presidential audio from their archives," writes C-ville Weekly.
Marc Selverstone C-ville