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Visiting Speaker: Buccola Public Talk

The Department of Political Science invites you to the following event:

James Baldwin, William F. Buckley Jr., and the American Dream

Nicholas Buccola, Linfield College
Tuesday, December 3rd, 12:00-1:30
Lillis Hall Room 112
Students (incl. classes) welcome!

On February 18, 1965, an overflowing crowd packed the Cambridge Union in Cambridge, England, to witness a historic televised debate between James Baldwin, the leading literary voice of the civil rights movement, and William F. Buckley Jr., a fierce critic of the movement and America’s most influential conservative intellectual. The topic was “the American dream is at the expense of the American Negro,” and no one who has seen the debate can soon forget it. This talk will draw on Prof. Buccola’s recent book The Fire Is upon Us, which tells the story of the event, the radically different paths that led Baldwin and Buckley to it, the controversies that followed, and how the debate and the decades-long clash between the men continues to illuminate America’s racial divide today.

Speaker Biography

Nick Buccola is the director of the Frederick Douglass Forum on Law, Rights, and Justice and Elizabeth & Morris Glicksman Chair in Political Science at Linfield College.  His talk will draw on his most recently published book The Fire Is upon Us: James Baldwin, William F. Buckley Jr., and the Debate over Race in America (Princeton 2019).  He is also the author of The Political Thought of Frederick Douglass (NYU Press) and editor of The Essential Douglas: Selected Writings and Speeches, along with Abraham Lincoln and Liberal Democracy.  



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