The 6th Hildene Symposium will be held on May 28, 29 and 30, 2008 at the Equinox Resort and The Lincoln Family Home at Hildene in Manchester Village, Vermont. With 2008 promising to be an exciting election year, the timing and topic for the event couldn’t be more appropriate; “WHY IT MATTERS: The Nine Most Important Elections in U. S. History.”
As the nation’s 16th President Abraham Lincoln put it, “The strife of the election is but human nature applied to the facts in the case.” Symposium speakers will cover elections that span the years from 1800 to 1932; contests whose outcomes had lasting influences on both the social and political climate in future years. They will lend their expert opinions to the “the facts in the case” for WHY IT MATTERS. Featured authors and scholars and the elections they will discuss are as follow: Williams College Professor Susan Dunn, National Election of 1800; Judge Frank Williams, National Election of 1864; Dona Brown, Vermont Congressional Election of 1932; Mark Stoler, National Election of 1932; Michael Holt, National Election of 1876; Harold Holzer, National Election of 1860; Daniel Feller, National Election of 1824; Greg Mitchell, California Gubernatorial Election of 1934; Kathleen Dalton, National Election of 1912.
The event concludes with lunch and a discussion entitled “Did We Get it Right?” moderated by Hildene’s Executive Director, Seth Bongartz and a panel composed of the symposium’s highly qualified presenters.
Noteworthy also is the keynote speaker, award winning Boston Globe journalist and author Larry Tye whose book The Father of Spin is used in public relations and journalism courses in college classrooms across the country. As the title of Tye’s book suggests, Edward L. Bernays was a pioneering practitioner of PR who did whatever it took for his clients including ambitious stunts, calculated cultivation of the press and solicited endorsements. In his address Tye looks at how spin has shaped American politics and the influence it has on the election process. In the preface Tye writes, “It is about how public thought is routinely shaped or, some might say, manipulated by singular powers in our culture. And so it is by necessity a book about democracy …” With his rich and varied journalistic background, Tye is eminently qualified to speak on the role that “spin” has historically played in the nation’s elections.
Hildene, The Lincoln Family Home
PO Box 377
Manchester, Vermont 05251
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