David Foglesong: High School Teachers Institute
Friday, December 03, 2021, 09:30am - 02:00pm
December 3, 2021
“How Did the Cold War End?”
David Foglesong, Professor of History, Rutgers University
This seminar will examine different approaches to explaining and remembering the end of the American-Soviet Cold War. We will begin by analyzing interpretations that concentrate on the roles of “great men,” particularly Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachev. Then we will consider arguments about how “citizen diplomats” contributed to the end of the Cold War by challenging negative stereotypes, altering popular attitudes, and influencing government policies. Finally, we will discuss the impact of ideas about how the Cold War ended – particularly the notions that the United States won the Cold War and that the Cold War ended with the collapse of the USSR in December 1991 – on US foreign policy in the last three decades. The seminar will be led by David Foglesong, a historian of American-Russian relations. His lectures will draw on his books, The American Mission and the “Evil Empire” (2007) and From Distant Friends to Intimate Enemies (forthcoming), as well as on his current research about citizen activism and the end of the Cold War.