Events

The Kennan Diaries

October 03, 2014 // 3:00pm5:00pm
The Kennan Diaries reveals the personal life and the political, philosophical, and spiritual concerns of America’s most noted diplomat and foreign policy strategist, George F. Kennan. Edited by historian Frank Costigliola, The Kennan Diaries is a landmark work of profound intellectual and emotional power.

Art Exhibit: "From War to Victory: Poland 1939-1989"

October 01, 2014 // 4:00pmOctober 10, 2014 // 5:00pm
“From War to Victory: Poland 1939-1989” features exhibitions from the Institute of National Remembrance that tell the history of Poland from the Second World War through the end of the Cold War. This exhibit will be on display in the Memorial Hallway of the Woodrow Wilson Center from 1 October-10 October, is open to the public and admission is free.

International Affairs and Transnational Relations

September 29, 2014 // 4:00pm5:30pm
Acclaimed Harvard historian Akira Iriye will reflect on the study of history today, examining recent historiographic trends and phenomena like “motion,” “interconnectedness,” and “hybridity” in an effort to move away from a Euro-centric approach.

Lessons of Iran-Contra: Behind the Scenes of Ronald Reagan's Iran Gambit, 1985-86

September 22, 2014 // 4:00pm5:30pm
Based on intensive research into once-classified records, as well as interviews and other accounts from Americans, Iranians and Israelis, Malcolm Byrne will revisit the Reagan administration’s controversial initiative toward Iran in 1985-1986. What was its real purpose? Who were the Iranians involved and what did they want? What was Israel’s role? What are the long-term lessons and impact of the operation?

The Archive Thief: Zosa Szajkowski and the Salvaging of French Jewish History

September 15, 2014 // 4:00pm5:30pm
In the aftermath of the Holocaust, Jewish historian Zosa Szajkowski stole tens of thousands of documents about Jews from French archives and sold them to libraries in the United States. To understand why he did it, Leff takes us into the “backstage” of the archives, and reveals the powerful ideological, economic and scientific forces that made Holocaust-era Jewish scholars care more deeply than ever before about preserving the remnants of their past.

The Zhivago Affair: The Kremlin, the CIA, and the Battle Over a Forbidden Book

September 08, 2014 // 4:00pm5:30pm
In The Zhivago Affair: The Kremlin, the CIA, and the Battle Over a Forbidden Book, Peter Finn and Petra Couvée bring readers intimately close to the charming, passionate, and complex artist that was Boris Pasternak. First to obtain CIA files providing concrete proof of the agency’s involvement, the authors give us a literary thriller that takes us back to a fascinating period of the Cold War—to a time when literature had the power to stir the world.

North Korean War Orphans in Transnational Educational Exchange

August 27, 2014 // 2:00pm3:00pm
More than 100,000 children from both North and South Korea were orphaned during the Korean War. In 1953, the North Korean government dispatched 1,200 orphans to the People’s Republic of Poland to be educated at a boarding school transformed into an orphanage. The orphans were repatriated after six years, at the insistence of the North Korean government, as tensions between Pyongyang and its communist allies began to emerge. NKIDP Intern Intaek Hong examines the complicated process of how the orphans defined their identity based on their experience of interacting with their Polish teachers—who became like foster parents—and deploying their subjectivity in the process.

Researching the Middle East

June 10, 2014 // 2:00pm4:00pm
This panel will discuss the challenges of researching and writing on recent Middle East history.
Photo by Mona Youssef

The Good Spy: The Life and Death of Robert Ames

May 22, 2014 // 3:00pm4:30pm
Pulitzer Prize-winning biographer Kai Bird appears in a conversation with Washington Post columnist David Ignatius to discuss Bird's new biography, The Good Spy: The Life and Death of Robert Ames. Robert Ames was the CIA officer who created the first clandestine contacts with the Palestine Liberation Organization. He was among those killed in the April 1983 truck bomb attack that destroyed the U.S. Embassy in Beirut.

FDR, the Jews, and the Holocaust: Resolving the Controversy

May 19, 2014 // 4:00pm5:30pm
Nearly seventy-five years after World War II, scholars hotly despite whether FDR was a hero of the Jews or a bystander or worse to the Nazi’s persecution and slaughter of Jews. In this talk Lichtman will draw upon the findings of his prize-winning book, FDR and the Jews (co-authored with Richard Breitman), to resolve the controversy. He will present a new portrait of a consummate politician— compassionate but also pragmatic—struggling with opposing priorities under perilous conditions.

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Upcoming Events

Art Exhibit: "From War to Victory: Poland 1939-1989"

October 01, 2014 // 4:00pmOctober 10, 2014 // 5:00pm

The Kennan Diaries

October 03, 2014 // 3:00pm5:00pm

Experts & Staff

  • Christian F. Ostermann // Director, History and Public Policy Program; Global Europe; Cold War International History Project; North Korea Documentation Project; Nuclear Proliferation International History Project
  • James Person // Deputy Director, History and Public Policy Program; Cold War International History Project; North Korea Documentation Project; Nuclear Proliferation International History Project
  • Pieter Biersteker // Editorial Assistant
  • Laura Deal // Catalog Specialist
  • Charles Kraus // Program Assistant
  • Evan Pikulski // Program Assistant
  • Roy O. Kim // Program Assistant