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CONVERSAZIONE: An Historian and his Intellectual History

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The spirit of a Conversazione is friendly and informal. Traditional in style, classic in form and intellectual in substance. Isaiah Berlin wrote a short essay with the title “My Intellectual Path”, where the Oxford historian was deciphering the intellectual origins of his thinking and the historical evolution of his thought. Leaving aside Isaiah Berlin, the idea of the seminar is to interrogate and to investigate the origins and the evolution of Prof. Paul Kennedy’s approach to history – from his pre-Oxford education to his Yale years, from “The Rise and Fall of Great Power” to “The Parliament of Man”, from naval-military history to the concept of grand strategy and “imperial overstretch”. In the spirit of a Conversazione, a direct dialogue with participants and students is encouraged.

Paul Kennedy, the J. Richardson Dilworth Professor of History and Director of International Security Studies at Yale, is the author and editor of fifteen books, including “The Rise and Fall of the Great Powers”. His latest book is “The Parliament of Man: The Past, Present, and Future of the United Nations” (November 2006).

This talk is part of the Pembroke Papers, Pembroke College series.

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