Events Calendar

David Foglesong: High School Teachers Institute

Friday, February 09, 2024, 09:00am - 02:30pm

“Did the Cold War End? The United States and Russia since the 1980s”

February 9, 2024

9a – 2:30p

David Foglesong, Professor, Department of History, Rutgers University 

This seminar will examine whether, and if so how, the American-Soviet Cold War ended. We will begin by critically analyzing interpretations that concentrate on the roles of “great men,” particularly Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachev, in the termination of superpower conflict. Then we will consider arguments about how “citizen diplomats” helped to overcome hostility between the two countries by challenging negative stereotypes, altering popular attitudes, and influencing media depictions. Finally, we will discuss the impact of different 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 American-Russian relations from the “new cold war” to the war in Ukraine.

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.