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RSC and RA organize U.S. Presidential Elections Project

 (10 October 2012 - 31 October 2012)

Lecture Series

In January 2012 the Roosevelt Study Center began a collaborative project with students from the Roosevelt Academy. Entitled ‘American Presidential Elections: Past and Present’, the project has involved five RA students holding internship positions at the RSC, with each student developing his/her own research topic. The first three students completed their internship in May, and the second group will be active at the RSC until the presidential elections on November 6. Alongside their research the interns have also organized a public lecture series about the upcoming elections, inviting several prominent academics and professionals to come and share their expertise. Following the successful spring lecture program, three additional lectures have now been scheduled for the autumn by RSC-RA interns Remco Zwetsloot and Jaïr van der Stelt.

The first of these lectures, on October 10, will be given by Professor Adam Fairclough. Fairclough holds the Raymond and Beverly Sackler Chair in American History at Leiden University, and is an internationally renowned scholar of the civil rights movement. In his lecture, Professor Fairclough will talk about the similarities and differences between the Franklin D. Roosevelt and Barack Obama administrations, using historical analysis to give insights into some of the problems in American politics and society today.

The second lecture, on October 24, will be given by Kirsten Verdel. Verdel, who worked for the central office of the Obama campaign in 2008, will focus on the practice of presidential campaigning. Her inside knowledge of the behind-the-scenes workings of such a campaign will give her lecture a special flavor. Following her lecture, Remco Zwetsloot will present his own research on campaign financing in the United States.

The last lecture in the series, on October 31, will be given by Professor Scott Lucas from the University of Birmingham, England. An expert on American foreign policy, Lucas will talk about Obama’s role in the world, the record of the past four years, and about what might be at stake in the upcoming elections. His lecture will be followed by Jaïr van der Stelt, who will present his own research on the role of Congress in foreign policy.