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Safeguarding Democratic Capitalism: U.S. Foreign Policy and National Security, 1920-2015

In Safeguarding Democratic Capitalism: U.S. Foreign Policy and National Security, 1920-2015, author Mel Leffler’s wide-ranging essays explain how policymakers shifted their focus from balancing economic imperatives at home and abroad to a preoccupation with safeguarding America’s core values of democratic capitalism. While assessing U.S. policymaking from World War I to the present, he also interrogates the evolution of his own scholarship. Over time, he married elements of revisionism with realism to form a unique synthesis that uses threat perception as a lens to understand the making of national security policy.

Date & Time

Jan. 8, 2018
4:00pm – 5:30pm

Location

6th Floor, Woodrow Wilson Center
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Safeguarding Democratic Capitalism: U.S. Foreign Policy and National Security, 1920-2015

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In Safeguarding Democratic Capitalism: U.S. Foreign Policy and National Security, 1920-2015, author Mel Leffler’s wide-ranging essays explain how policymakers shifted their focus from balancing economic imperatives at home and abroad to a preoccupation with safeguarding America’s core values of democratic capitalism. While assessing U.S. policymaking from World War I to the present, he also interrogates the evolution of his own scholarship. Over time, he married elements of revisionism with realism to form a unique synthesis that uses threat perception as a lens to understand the making of national security policy.

Melvyn P. Leffler is the Edward Stettinius Professor of American History at The University of Virginia and Compton Professor at UVA’s Miller Center. He is the author of A Preponderance of Power: National Security, the Truman Administration, and the Cold War, which won the Bancroft, Ferrell, and Hoover Prizes, as well as For the Soul of Mankind: the United States, the Soviet Union, and the Cold War, which won the American Historical Association’s George Louis Beer Prize. He is also the editor and author of many books dealing with the evolution of American foreign economic policy and national security strategy from Wilson to Obama. He has been president of the Society of Historians of American Foreign Relations as well as Harmsworth Professor at Oxford. The Washington History Seminar is co-chaired by Eric Arnesen (George Washington University) and Philippa Strum (Woodrow Wilson Center) and is sponsored jointly by the National History Center of the American Historical Association and the Wilson Center's History and Public Policy Program. It meets weekly during the academic year. The seminar thanks the Society for Historians of American Foreign Relations and the George Washington University History Department for their support.


Hosted By

History and Public Policy Program

The History and Public Policy Program uses history to improve understanding of important global dynamics, trends in international relations, and American foreign policy.  Read more

Cold War International History Project

The Cold War International History Project supports the full and prompt release of historical materials by governments on all sides of the Cold War. Through an award winning Digital Archive, the Project allows scholars, journalists, students, and the interested public to reassess the Cold War and its many contemporary legacies. It is part of the Wilson Center's History and Public Policy Program.  Read more

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