By the Book: Emily J. Levine & Ellen Schrecker

Friday, January 28, 2022 - 2:00pm - 3:00pm
Event Presenter/Author: 
Emily J. Levine & Ellen Schrecker

Emily J. Levine and Ellen Schrecker will discuss their books Allies and Rivals: German-American Exchange and the Rise of the Modern Research University and The Lost Promise: American Universities in the 1960s.

Presented in partnership with By the Book: Smart Talk with Chicago Authors, from the University of Chicago Press

Virtual Event

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About Allies and Rivals: During the nineteenth century, nearly ten thousand Americans traveled to Germany to study in universities renowned for their research and teaching. By the mid-twentieth century, American institutions led the world. How did America become the center of excellence in higher education? And what does that story reveal about who will lead in the twenty-first century? Allies and Rivals is a history of the ascent of American higher education seen through the lens of German-American exchange. In a series of compelling portraits of such leaders as Wilhelm von Humboldt, Martha Carey Thomas, and W. E. B. Du Bois, Emily J. Levine shows how academic innovators on both sides of the Atlantic competed and collaborated to shape the research university. Even as nations sought world dominance through scholarship, universities retained values apart from politics and economics. Open borders enabled Americans to unite the English college and German PhD to create the modern research university, a hybrid now replicated the world over.

Emily J. Levine is associate professor of education and (by courtesy) history at Stanford University. She is the author of Allies and Rivals and Dreamland of Humanists, published by the University of Chicago Press.

About The Lost Promise: The 1950s through the early 1970s are widely seen as American academia's golden age, when universities—well funded and viewed as essential for national security, economic growth, and social mobility—embraced an egalitarian mission. Swelling in size, schools attracted new types of students and professors, including radicals who challenged their institutions' calcified traditions. But that halcyon moment soon came to a painful and confusing end, with consequences that still afflict the halls of ivy. In The Lost Promise, historian Ellen Schrecker delivers a far-reaching examination of how and why it happened.

Ellen Schrecker is a retired professor of history at Yeshiva University and the author of numerous books, including No Ivory Tower: McCarthyism and the Universities, Many Are the Crimes: McCarthyism in America, and The Lost Soul of Higher Education: Corporatization, the Assault on Academic Freedom, and the End of the American University.

Event Location: 
Virtual