Dartmouth Events

Don’t Join the Book Burners: Eisenhower at Dartmouth, 1953

The Rockefeller Center and the Class of 1953 present a Constitution Day event with University of Virginia Professor William Hitchcock.

Monday, September 11, 2023
4:00pm – 5:15pm
Online Event
Intended Audience(s): Public

ZOOM LINK: https://dartgo.org/eisenhower

Speaker: William Hitchcock
James Madison Prof. of History, Univ. of Virginia

Host: Jason Barabas '93
Director, Rockefeller Center
Prof. of Govt.

Special Guest Host: Richard Cahn ’53

Moderator: Edward Miller
Chair, Dept. of Asian Societies, Cultures, & Languages
Assoc. Prof. of History & Asian Studies

Lecture: Did President Eisenhower do enough to confront Sen. Joseph McCarthy during the “red scare” of the 1950s? Many of his critics think Ike was too cautious in his handling of the Wisconsin demagogue. But Eisenhower did have a strategy: avoid direct confrontation, move quietly behind the scenes, and try to discredit McCarthy. One of the most important moments in Eisenhower’s stealth campaign against McCarthy unfolded in Hanover during the commencement exercise of 1953. This talk will illuminate the context behind Eisenhower’s famous phrase from his Dartmouth address: “Don’t join the book burners!”

Speaker: William I. Hitchcock is the James Madison Prof. of History at UVA. He has written and edited numerous books on the politics and diplomacy of the 20th Century, in particular the era of the world wars and the Cold War. He received his B.A. degree from Kenyon College in 1986, and his Ph.D. from Yale Univ. in 1994. He has been a Fulbright scholar, a fellow of the Nobel Institute in Oslo, and the holder of the Henry Kissinger Chair at the Library of Congress.
His 2008 book, The Bitter Road to Freedom: A New History of the Liberation of Europe, was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize, and a winner of the George Louis Beer Prize from the American Historical Assoc. His most recent book, published in 2018, is The Age of Eisenhower: America and the World in the 1950s, which appeared on the New York Times bestseller list.

Host: Dr. Jason Barabas ’93 is the Director of the Rockefeller Ctr. and a Prof. in the Govt Dept. Barabas teaches and conducts research on American politics in the areas of political knowledge, deliberation, public policy, and democratic performance. His findings have been published in journals including the American Political Science Review, the American Journal of Political Science, and the Journal of Politics. Barabas earned his Ph.D. in Political Sci. from Northwestern Univ. and his undergraduate degree in Govt. from Dartmouth College. After graduating, Barabas was appointed as an economic policy advisor for the Governor of Illinois, which fostered an appreciation for retail politics as well as pragmatic solutions to policy problems. In the years since, he has held fellowships at Harvard and Princeton as well as faculty positions in NY, FL, and IL.

Moderator: Edward Miller is a historian, teacher, and digital humanist. His research and teaching focus on Modern Vietnam, the Vietnam War, and oral history. His scholarship explores the international and transnational dimensions of the Vietnam War and is based on research in archives in Vietnam, Europe, and the U.S. His publications include Misalliance: Ngo Dinh Diem, the United States, and the Fate of South Vietnam (Harvard, 2013) and The Vietnam War: A Documentary Reader (Wiley, 2016).

Professor Miller is at work on a book-length study of the Vietnam War in the Mekong Delta that re-interprets the conflict there as a civil war. That study draws on archival sources, interviews, and other materials collected in both the U.S. and Vietnam. Prof. Miller is co-editing a volume of the forthcoming Cambridge History of the Vietnam War.

For more information, contact:
Joanne Blais

Events are free and open to the public unless otherwise noted.