Experts to Visit UM During Three-Part Lecture Series

March 04, 2014

MISSOULA – The Mansfield Ethics and Public Affairs Program at the University of Montana has announced its 2014 lecture series for the community. The series is titled “Our Unraveling Democracy? Consulting the Past to Understand the Present” and is co-sponsored by the Project on American Democracy and Citzenship.

The lectures are free and open to the public. The schedule follows:

  • 7:30-9 p.m. Tuesday, March 11, Interdisciplinary Science Building Room 110: “Inside the Mind of the Christian Right: A Deep History of the Culture Wars,” Molly Worthen, assistant professor of history, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
  • 3:10-4:30 p.m. Wednesday, March 12, Gallagher Business Building Room 123: “The Importance of Reinhold Niebuhr’s Irony of American History,” Andrew J. Bacevich, professor of international relations and history, Boston University.
  • 7:30-9 p.m. Tuesday, March 18, Turner Hall Dell Brown Room: “The Tocquevillean Moment … and Ours,” Wilfred M. McClay, G.T. and Libby Blankenship Chair in the History of Liberty at the University of Oklahoma.

Worthen’s research focuses on North American religious and intellectual history, particularly the ideas and culture of conservative Christianity in the 20th century. During her lecture she will discuss the Christian Right as a product of a long civil war within evangelical ranks, a battle over intellectual authority with roots that stretch centuries into the past.

Bacevich is a graduate of the U.S. Military Academy. He earned his doctorate in American diplomatic history from Princeton University. Before joining the faculty of Boston University, he taught at West Point and Johns Hopkins University. During his lecture he will assess the cost and benefits of American militarism. Bacevich is also on campus to deliver a talk on American militarism as part of the President’s Lecture Series, which will take place at 8 p.m. in the George and Jane Dennison Theatre.

McClay, a Senior Fellow of the Ethics and Public Policy Center, is a widely acclaimed expert on American intellectual and cultural history. He was appointed in 2002 to the National Council on the Humanities, the advisory board for the National Endowment for the Humanities. He also is a senior scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, D.C. His lecture will examine the body of thought from Alexis de Tocqueville, one of the most profound and enduringly influential thinkers of the 19th century.  

For more information on the lecture series, call Michal Helman, project coordinator for UM’s Mansfield Ethics and Public Affairs Program, at 734-834-6485 or email






Contact: Michal Helman, project coordinator, UM Mansfield Ethics and Public Affairs Program, 734-834-6485,