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Results for BRI Scholar Talks

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America’s Revolutionary Mind with C. Bradley Thompson | BRI Scholar Talks

29 Min

We all know the Declaration of Independence, but do we know the philosophical and moral underpinnings behind the famous document? In this Scholar Talk video, BRI Senior Teaching Fellow, Tony Williams and C. Bradley Thompson, Professor of Political Science at Clemson University, discuss Thompson's book "America's Revolutionary Mind: A Moral History of the American Revolution and the Declaration That Defined It." How did the moral ideas of natural rights and self-government borrowed from Enlightenment thinkers like John Locke help shape the founding of the nation? In what way was the Revolution, as Adams called it, a “Revolution [that] was in the Minds and Hearts of the People?”

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Anna Julia Cooper with Anika Prather | Black Intellectuals Series #5

26 Min

What contribution did Anna Julia Cooper, prominent African-American author and educator, make to understanding the Black experience in America? In this episode of our Scholar Talk series "Black Intellectuals and the African American Experience," BRI Senior Teaching Fellow Tony Williams is joined by Anika Prather, Professor of English at Howard University, to discuss the unique ways Cooper advocated for equal educational and economic opportunities of Black Americans. As a high school teacher and college professor at Black institutions, how did Cooper use Founding principles of equality and dignity to empower others?

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Booker T. Washington with Robert J. Norrell | Black Intellectuals Series #3

22 Min

How did Booker T. Washington, prominent African American educator and intellectual, contribute to understanding the Black experience in America? In this episode of our Scholar Talk series "Black Intellectuals and the African American Experience," BRI Senior Teaching Fellow Tony Williams is joined by Robert J. Norrell, Professor of History & Bernadotte Schmitt Chair of Excellence, the University of Tennessee and author of "Up from History: The Life of Booker T. Washington." Together, they explore the educational ideas of Washington and the ways he challenged racial discrimination and contributed to American culture broadly. What educational ideas and civic virtues did Washington promote for Black advancement?

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Cold War De-Escalation with Jeremi Suri | BRI Scholar Talks: Cold War & the Presidency Series #4

21 Min

What next paths did President Richard Nixon and Henry Kissinger forge in American Cold War foreign policy? In this Cold War & the Presidency Scholar Talk, BRI Senior Teaching Fellow Tony Williams is joined by Jeremi Suri, Professor of History and Public Affairs at The University of Texas at Austin, to discuss how Richard Nixon and Henry Kissinger subverted Congressional oversight to achieve their Cold War agenda. What was different about their approaches from those of previous administrations? Should Nixon have been able to use so much presidential power to achieve peace?

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Cold War Origins with Sean McMeekin | BRI Scholar Talks: Cold War & The Presidency Series

22 Min

What factors contributed to the origins of the Cold War during the presidency of Franklin Roosevelt? Join us today for the first episode of our summer Scholar Talks miniseries, “Cold War & the Presidency.” BRI Senior Teaching Fellow Tony Williams is joined by Sean McMeekin, Professor of History at Bard College, as they discuss his new book, "Stalin's War: A New History of World War II." How did FDR’s presidential unilateralism and diplomatic relations with the Soviet Union shape executive power during World War II and for his successors during the Cold War?

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Discussing Ralph Ellison with Lucas Morel | Black Intellectuals & the African-American Experience #1

25 Min

How did Ralph Ellison, prominent African-American novelist and intellectual, contribute to understanding the Black experience in America? In the first episode of our new Scholar Talk series "Black Intellectuals and the African-American Experience," BRI Senior Teaching Fellow Tony Williams is joined by Lucas Morel, Professor of Politics at Washington & Lee University and editor of several significant books on Ellison. Together, they'll reveal the unique ways Ellison wrote about the Black identity and experience during segregation and contributed to American culture broadly. What Founding values did Ellison emphasize to fellow African Americans during a time of racial discrimination? In our new Scholar Talk series "Black Intellectuals and the African-American Experience," BRI's Senior Teaching Fellow Tony Williams will be joined by a new scholar every week to discuss the unique ways Black intellectuals like Ralph Ellison, Anna Julia Cooper, and Frederick Douglass have contributed to understanding the African-American experience in America. How did they advance the struggle for civil rights and Founding ideals of equality, justice, and liberty?

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Frederick Douglass with Peter Myers | BRI Scholar Talks: Black Intellectuals Series #2

21 Min

How did Frederick Douglass contribute to our understanding of the Black experience in America? In the second episode of our series, “Black Intellectuals and the African-American Experience,” BRI Senior Teaching Fellow Tony Williams sits down with Peter C. Myers, professor of political science at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, to explore the life and legacy of abolitionist Frederick Douglass. How did Douglass view American Founding documents? What were the most important challenges in the struggle for Black equality and justice according to Douglass?

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From Oligarchy to Republicanism with Forrest Nabors | BRI Scholar Talks

After the Founders established a republican political regime based on the ideals of natural rights and equality, how did the South create a system of enslavement and an oligarchy with rule by the few? In this video, BRI Senior Teaching Fellow Tony Williams is joined by Forrest Nabors, Associate Professor and Chair of the Department of Political Science at the University of Alaska at Anchorage, to discuss his new book, "From Oligarchy to Republicanism: The Great Task of Reconstruction." Nabors explains how the South turned away from Founding ideals and grew into a society in which few had power over many in the years leading up to the Civil War. How was Reconstruction an attempt to replace the southern oligarchical system with a free government of liberty and equality? About Forrest Nabors: Professor Forrest Nabors previously taught American government and political philosophy at Oregon State University and the University of Oregon. Prior to becoming a professor, Nabors was a high technology business executive in Portland, Oregon. "From Oligarchy to Republicanism: The Great Task of Reconstruction" won the award for best book in American Political Thought in 2017 from the American Political Science Association.

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George Washington’s Political Genius with David O. Stewart | BRI Scholar Talks

25 Min

George Washington spent a lifetime mastering politics before he was unanimously elected the nation’s first president. In this Scholar Talk video, Tony Williams and distinguished bestselling historian David O. Stewart discuss Stewart's new book, "George Washington: The Political Rise of America's Founding Father," and how George Washington demonstrated political genius in helping create the American republic. How did Washington grow from a brash and impatient young man to exercise the civic virtues of restraint and moderation? What are some of the lessons we can still learn from America's first Commander in Chief?

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JFK and Foreign Policy with Greg Schneider | BRI Scholar Talks: Cold War & The Presidency Series #3

20 Min

How did JFK respond to foreign policy crises during his presidency? In this Cold War & the Presidency Scholar Talk, BRI Senior Teaching Fellow Tony Williams is joined by Greg Schneider, Professor of History at Emporia State University, to discuss the significant role that John F. Kennedy played in the Cold War. Did JFK and his advisors experience growth in addressing Cold War conflicts? How did JFK continue Harry Truman’s approach of containment during his presidency?

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Liberty & Equality in the American Founding with Carol Berkin | BRI’s #ConstitutionDayLive

30 Min

How did the Founders understand the principles of liberty and equality? Join us for Constitution Day as BRI Senior Teaching Fellow Tony Williams sits down with Professor Carol Berkin, distinguished historian, author, and expert on the American Revolution and women’s history, to explore the history of these principles during the Founding. How did the American Founding create a government and a civil society based upon the principles of liberty and equality? In what ways did the country fail to achieve the ideals and aspirations of liberty and equality for all Americans?

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Patriotism & Piety with Jonathan Den Hartog | BRI Scholar Talks

23 Min

Religion was at the heart of the founding of the American colonies, but did you know that it played a major role in political life? In this episode of Scholar Talks, BRI Senior Teaching Fellow Tony Williams is joined by Jonathan Den Hartog, Professor of History at Samford University, to discuss how religion influenced politics in the early Republic. How did religion affect the growing partisan divide between Federalists and Democratic-Republicans? What lessons can we learn from the political division of the late eighteenth-century Republic?

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Reagan & the Cold War with Stephen Knott | BRI Scholar Talks: Cold War & the Presidency Series #5

17 Min

While there were a variety of factors that led to the end of the Cold War, no one can deny that Ronald Regan played a pivotal role. For the final episode of our Cold War & the Presidency Series, BRI Staff Tony Williams is joined by Stephen F. Knott, professor of National Security Affairs at the Naval War College, as they discuss Reagan's moral vision of the Soviet Union and how it shaped his practical approach to confronting the Soviets. Why did he alter the policies of past presidents like détente and the containment doctrine? What impact did Reagan’s approach to the Cold War have on the American presidency and the end of the Cold War?

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Robert E. Lee & the Battle of Gettysburg with Allen Guelzo | Pivotal Battles in American History #2

39 Min

How did the Battle of Gettysburg shape the outcome of the Civil War and why was it pivotal in American history? In this episode of our Scholar Talks series, "Pivotal Battles in American History," BRI Senior Teaching Fellow Tony Williams is joined by Allen Guelzo, Director of the James Madison Program’s Initiative in Politics and Statesmanship and three-time winner of the prestigious Lincoln Prize, to discuss Dr. Guelzo’s highly acclaimed books "Robert E. Lee: A Life" and "Gettysburg: The Last Invasion." Why did Lee decide to join the Confederacy despite professional and personal conflicts, and how did his tactical decisions at Gettysburg influence the outcome of the Civil War?

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The Battle of Midway with Craig Symonds | Pivotal Battles in American History #3

18 Min

How did the Battle of Midway shape the outcome of the Pacific War in World War II and why was it pivotal in American history? To wrap up our Scholar Talk series, "Pivotal Battles in American History," BRI Senior Teaching Fellow Tony Williams is joined by Dr. Craig Symonds, Professor of History Emeritus at the United States Naval Academy, Lincoln Prize winner, and the author of numerous books on naval history including "The Battle of Midway." Together, they discuss the dramatic course of the Battle of Midway. How did the carrier change the nature of naval warfare during World War II? What decisions made by leadership on both sides led to the Americans' stunning victory over the Japanese?

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The Battle of Saratoga with Kevin Weddle | Pivotal Battles in American History

29 Min

How did the Battle of Saratoga shape the outcome of the Revolutionary War and of American history? In the first episode of our new Scholar Talks series, "Pivotal Battles in American History," BRI Senior Teaching Fellow Tony Williams is joined by Dr. Kevin Weddle, Professor of Military Theory and Strategy at the US Army War College and author of "The Compleat Victory: Saratoga and the American Revolution," to discuss the dramatic role the Battle of Saratoga played in the Revolutionary War. What factors led to the quick unraveling of British strategy in 1777? What was significant about the leadership of American field commanders and generals in the battlefield?

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The Crooked Path to Abolition with James Oakes | BRI Scholar Talks

26 Min

How were the Civil War and the question of slavery related to differing interpretations of a pro-slavery or anti-slavery Constitution? In this video, two-time Lincoln Prize winner, James Oakes, and BRI Senior Teaching Fellow Tony Williams discuss his new book, “The Crooked Path to Abolition: Abraham Lincoln and the Antislavery Constitution.” Oakes explores what role the Constitution played in abolishing slavery and how the Civil War accelerated this process. Why did Lincoln view the Constitution as an anti-slavery document? In what ways were Lincoln’s opinions different from his contemporaries? In what ways were they similar?

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The Marbleheaders & American Independence with Patrick K. O’Donnell | BRI Scholar Talks

24 Min

During the American Revolution, an elite and racially diverse group of men called the Marbleheaders played a critical role in contributing to the creation of American liberty and independence. In this Scholar Talk video, Tony Williams, BRI Senior Teaching Fellow, and historian, bestselling author, and professional speaker Patrick K. O'Donnell, discuss O'Donnell's new book, "The Indispensables: The Diverse Soldier-Mariners who Shaped the Country, Formed the Navy, and Rowed Washington Across the Delaware." How did the members of the regiment demonstrate civic virtues of courage, perseverance, and equality? How did they lay the foundation for the U.S. Navy and American self-government?

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The Politics of War Powers with Sarah Burns | BRI Scholar Talks

29 Min

How has the president been able to decide when the United States goes to war without Congress deliberating and declaring war? In this video, BRI Senior Teaching Fellow Tony Williams and Associate Professor of Political Science at Rochester Institute of Technology, Sarah Burns, discuss her new book, "The Politics of War Powers: The Theory and History of Presidential Unilateralism." What is the proper constitutional balance between the Congress and presidency when it comes to war powers? What might the remedy be for restoring the balance and the separation of powers?

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Thomas Jefferson, Confounding Father with Robert M. S. McDonald | BRI Scholar Talks

29 Min

Author of the Declaration of Independence, leader of the political opposition, and third president, Thomas Jefferson is one of the most eminent and yet most controversial historical figures in his time and today. Demonized as a demagogue and radical, Jefferson had many critics and political enemies. In this video, distinguished scholar Robert M. S. McDonald and BRI Senior Teaching Fellow Tony Williams discuss his new book, “Confounding Father: Thomas Jefferson's Image in His Own Time.” What were the concerns that Jefferson’s contemporaries had relating to his style of governance? How did his relationship with Sally Hemings affect his political endeavors?

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Truman & Containment with John Moser | BRI Scholar Talks: Cold War & The Presidency Series #2

20 Min

What was containment and how did it shape American foreign policy during the Cold War? In this Cold War & the Presidency Scholar Talk video, BRI Senior Teaching Fellow Tony Williams is joined by John Moser, Professor of History at Ashland University, to discuss the significant role that Harry Truman played in the Cold War. How did Truman's presidential unilateralism provide a precedent for his successors to fight major wars without a declaration of war? Did Truman’s expansive view of American foreign policy and global responsibilities align with constitutional principles?

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W. E. B. Du Bois with Derrick Alridge | Black Intellectuals Series #6

25 Min

How did W.E.B. Du Bois, prominent African-American intellectual, contribute to understanding the Black experience in America? In this video, BRI Senior Teaching Fellow Tony Williams is joined by Derrick P. Alridge, Professor of Education at the University of Virginia and affiliate faculty member in the Carter G. Woodson Institute for African-American and African Studies. Dr. Alridge is the author of "The Educational Thought of W.E.B. Du Bois: An Intellectual History." Together, they explore the educational ideas of Du Bois and the ways he challenged racial discrimination in "The Souls of Black Folk" and as editor of "The Crisis." How did his ideas about the "Talented Tenth” and Black education promote equality and justice?

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Washington’s Cabinet with Lindsay Chervinsky | BRI Scholar Talks

22 Min

Among the different constitutional traditions George Washington established as America’s first president, perhaps one of the more overlooked was the creation of the cabinet. Join us today as Dr. Lindsay Chervinsky, Scholar in Residence at the Institute for Thomas Paine Studies at Iona College, and BRI Senior Teaching Fellow Tony Williams discuss her new book, "The Cabinet: George Washington and the Creation of an American Institution." In this episode, Dr. Chervinsky explores topics such as how Washington’s military experience shaped the cabinet, how cabinet members were picked, and the famous Jefferson-Hamilton dispute of the early republic. What historical precedents did Washington establish for the American presidency related to the principles of republicanism and separation of powers?"

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Zora Neale Hurston with Patricia Brown | Black Intellectuals Series #4

22 Min

How did Zora Neale Hurston, noted African-American writer during the Harlem Renaissance, contribute to understanding the Black experience in America? In this episode of our Scholar Talk series "Black Intellectuals and the African American Experience," BRI Senior Teaching Fellow Tony Williams is joined by Patricia Brown, professor of English at Azusa Pacific University, to discuss Hurston's unique examination and celebration of Black expression, creativity, and resiliency. How did Hurston's book "Their Eyes Were Watching God" convey a message of Black women's freedom and self-discovery?