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America First: The past and future of an idea

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America First: The past and future of an idea

Jefferson Cowie, Darren Dochuk, David Farber, Michael Froman, Beverly Gage, Maria Cristina Garcia, Nicole Hemmer, William Hitchcock, Geoffrey Kabaservice, Robert Kagan, Melvyn Leffler, David Milne, Christopher Nichols, Andrew Preston

Thursday, April 26, 2018
8:15AM - 5:00PM (EDT)
Event Details

 

The 2018 William and Carol Stevenson Conference

AMERICA FIRST: The Past and Future of an Idea

8:15 a.m.                                 Welcome by Bill Antholis, Director of the Miller Center

8:30 10:00 a.m.                    Panel 1: America First in the Era of Global Conflict, 1914–1945

In the interwar years, the ideology of “America First” spread across the United States, taking root in public discourse and deeply shaping U.S. foreign policy. Where did the ideas that underpinned “America First” come from? Were they new or did they have a long history? Who emerged as its most effective spokesmen and why? How did these ideas make such rapid headway into American public life? And what became of “America First” in the course of the Second World War?

“America First in American History”

Andrew Preston, Cambridge University

“America First, American Isolationism, and the Coming of World War II”

Christopher Nichols, Oregon State University

“Transcending America First: FDR and American Internationalism”

David Milne, University of East Anglia

10:00 10:30 a.m.                  Coffee Break

 

10:30 a.m.  12:00 p.m.           Panel 2: America First in Cold War America, 1945–1968

The United States relied upon a global alliance to defeat Germany and Japan in the Second World War, and postwar U.S. leaders committed America to build enduring global alliances as well as new economic structures to sustain America’s security. Yet even at the height of America’s “internationalist” moment, the ideas that had animated America First endured. Where did “America First” go during the early Cold War? What kinds of arguments were made in favor of it at a time of American global dominance? And did those voices shape a resurgence of America First?

“The Old Isolationists in a New Era” 

David Farber, University of Kansas

“McCarthyism, anti-Communism, and America First”

Beverly Gage, Yale University

“Conservative Intellectuals and Critique of Cold War/New Deal/Great Society America”   

Geoffrey Kabaservice, Niskanen Center

 

1:002:30 p.m.                      Panel 3: America First in the Age of Globalization, 1968–2018

Part I: The Global Economy

Since the 1970s, globalization has profoundly altered the economic, social, and political foundations of the United States. How has the “America First” idea been spurred by globalization, broadly conceived? And how have contemporary social, cultural and demographic developments also fueled the anxieties and critiques associated with the “America First” world-view?

“The Local vs Global Economy: America First in the Neo-Liberal Age”

Jefferson Cowie, Vanderbilt University

“America First and the Impact of Global Trade Agreements from NAFTA to TPP”

Michael Froman, Miller Center

 2:30 – 3:00 p.m.                    Coffee Break

3:00 – 4:30 p.m.                     Panel 4: America First in the Age of Globalization, 1968–2018

Part II: Domestic Politics and Culture

“Demographic Trends: Immigration, Race and America First”

Maria Cristina Garcia, Cornell University

“Religion, Region and Culture”

Darren Dochuk, University of Notre Dame

 “Mass  Media, Technology, Culture, and Politics”

Niki Hemmer, Miller Center

 

When
Thursday, April 26, 2018
8:15AM - 5:00PM (EDT)
Where
The Miller Center
2201 Old Ivy Rd
Charlottesville, VA 22903
Speakers
Jefferson Cowie

Jefferson Cowie

Jefferson Cowie is the James G. Stahlman Chair in the department of history at Vanderbilt University. He is the author of The Great Exception: The New Deal and the Limits of American Politics.

Darren Dochuk

Darren Dochuk

Darren Dochuk is an associate professor of history at Notre Dame. He has written widely on religion, politics, economics, and culture in American life. He is the co-editor of From Bible Belt to Sunbelt: Plain-Folk Religion, Grassroots Politics, and the Rise of Evangelical Conservatism.

David Farber

David Farber

David Farber, the Roy A. Roberts Distinguished Professor at the University of Kansas, studies political culture, social change movements, and counterculture in 20th-century US history. He is the author of The Rise and Fall of Modern American Conservatism.

Michael Froman

Michael Froman

Michael Froman is a James R. Schlesinger Distinguished Professor at the Miller Center. He served as the US trade representative from June 2013 to January 2017. 

Beverly Gage

Beverly Gage

Beverly Gage is a professor of history and American studies at Yale University, as well as a Brady-Johnson Professor of Grand Strategy. She is the author of The Day Wall Street Exploded: A Story of America in its First Age of Terror.

Maria Cristina Garcia

Maria Cristina Garcia

Maria Cristina Garcia, a 2016 Andrew Carnegie fellow, is the Howard A. Newman Professor of American Studies in the department of history at Cornell University. She specializes in US immigration history and policy. She is the author of The Refugee Challenge in Post–Cold War America.

Nicole Hemmer

Nicole Hemmer

Nicole Hemmer is an associate professor of presidential studies at the Miller Center. She is an expert on the history of American politics, conservatism, and the media. She is the author of Messangers of the Right: Conservative Media and the Transformation of American Politics.

William Hitchcock

William Hitchcock

William Hitchcock is the Randolph P. Compton Professor of History at the University of Virginia, where he focuses on the international, diplomatic, and military history of the 20th century. He is the author of The Age of Eisenhower: America and the World in the 1950s.

Geoffrey Kabaservice

Geoffrey Kabaservice

Geoffrey Kabaservice is the author of the National Book Award–nominated The Guardians: Kingman Brewster, His Circle, and the Rise of the Liberal Establishment. He has written for numerous national publications and has been an assistant professor of history at Yale University. He is currently the director of political studies at the Niskanen Center.

Robert Kagan

Robert Kagan

Robert Kagan is a senior fellow of foreign policy, project on international order and strategy, at the Brookings Institution. He served in the State Department from 1984 to 1988 as a member of the policy planning staff, as principal speechwriter for Secretary of State George P. Shultz, and as deputy for policy in the Bureau of Inter-American Affairs.

Melvyn Leffler

Melvyn Leffler

Mel Leffler is the Edward R. Stettinius, Jr. Professor of History at the University of Virginia, with an expertise in the Cold War, arms control, Communism, and national security. His most recent book is Safeguarding Democratic Captialism.

David Milne

David Milne

David Milne is a senior lecturer in history at the University of East Anglia. He is the author of America’s Rasputin: Walt Rostow and the Vietnam War and Worldmaking: The Art and Science of American Diplomacy.

Christopher Nichols

Christopher Nichols

Christopher Nichols is the director of the Oregon State University Center for the Humanities and a 2016 Andrew Carnegie Fellow. He specializes in the history of the United States and its relationship to the rest of the world. He is the author of Promise and Peril: America at the Dawn of a Global Age.

Andrew Preston

Andrew Preston

Andrew Preston is a professor of American history at the University of Cambridge. His research focuses the intersections of the national and the international, the foreign and the domestic, including the influence that domestic politics and religious culture have on the conduct of US foreign policy.