From Emancipation to Civil Rights and Beyond: Legacies of the Civil War at 150


American Antiquarian Society
185 Salisbury Street
Worcester, MA 01609
United States

One of the nation's foremost historians of slavery and resistance, David W. Blight will discuss the multiple legacies of the Civil War from the 50th to the 100th, and now to the 150th anniversaries of the event. Professor Blight will also explore how the legacies of this great conflict are still very much part of our current, roiling political debates.


David W. Blight is Class of 1954 Professor of American History at Yale University, and Director, of the Gilder Lehrman Center for the Study of Slavery, Resistance, and Abolition at Yale. He is the author of Race and Reunion: The Civil War in American Memory (2001), which received eight book awards, including the Bancroft Prize, the Abraham Lincoln Prize, and the Frederick Douglass Prize as well as four awards from the Organization of American Historians, including the Merle Curti prizes for both intellectual and social history. His recently published, American Oracle: The Civil War in the Civil Rights Era (2011), received the 2012 Anisfield-Wolf Award for best book in non-fiction on racism and human diversity. Other published works include a book of essays, Beyond the Battlefield: Race, Memory, and the American Civil War (2002); and Frederick Douglass's Civil War: Keeping Faith in Jubilee (1989). Blight is also a frequent book reviewer for the Washington Post Book World, the Chicago Tribune, the Los Angeles Times, the San Francisco Chronicle, the Boston Globe, and other newspapers, and has written many articles on abolitionism, American historical memory, and African American intellectual and cultural history. He has been a consultant to many documentary films, including the 1998 PBS series, "Africans in America," and "The Reconstruction Era" (2004). In 2012, Blight was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.