We are honored to welcome back esteemed Columbia Prof. Kenneth Jackson (courtesy of Columbia Alumni Association) as our speaker for a dinner event on Feb. 13, 2018.
"The Roller Coaster of History: The Rise, Decline, and Rise Again of New York"
Speaker: Prof. Kenneth Jackson
Tuesday, February 13, 2018 at 6PM
Bay Colony Golf Club at Pelican Marsh
9740 Bent Grass Bend, Naples, FL 34108
$40 per dinner
In 1950, New York was the capital of the world and the greatest city on earth. In 1975, it was in decline, industry and corporations were leaving, white flight was in full flower, crime was rising, and the city was technically bankrupt. In 2010, the city was once again on top, with population gains in the hundreds of thousands, with declining crime, rising property values, and record-breaking tourism. The talk will analyze these shifts and make predictions about the future.
Prof. Kenneth Jackson is Director of the Herbert H. Lehman Center for the Study of American History and the Jacques Barzun Professor of History and the Social Sciences at Columbia University, where he has also chaired the Department of History. A graduate of the University of Memphis (B.A., magna cum laude, 1961) and the University of Chicago (M.A., 1963; Ph.D., 1966), he served for three years as an officer in the United States Air Force before joining the Columbia faculty as an assistant professor in 1968. He has served as president of the Society of American Historians (1998-2000), and the New York Historical Society (2001-2004), as well as other esteemed historical organizations. He has been a Fulbright Lecturer in Germany, Australia, and Japan, and has lectured at hundreds of colleges, universities, civic groups, and historical societies around the world, as well as been a featured guest on the NBC Today Show, ABC World News Tonight, CBS Evening News, CNN, the History Channel, and more than forty documentary productions. He has won fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation, the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation, and the Century Foundation. He has been awarded the New-York Historical Society's Pintard-Benson Centennial Medal, Columbia University's Nicholas Murray Butler Medal, the New York Post's Liberty Medal, the National Institute of Social Sciences' Gold Medal, and numerous other honors & awards.
A past or present member of the editorial boards of numerous professional journals, Professor Jackson is the general editor of the Columbia History of Urban Life, twenty volumes of which had appeared as of 2013. He was the editor-in-chief of the Dictionary of American Biography from 1990 to 1996, and of the Scribner’s Encyclopedia of American Lives from 1996 to 2005. He is the co-author with Camilo J. Vergara of Silent Cities: The Evolution of the American Cemetery (Princeton Architectural Press, 1989). His other books include The Ku Klux Klan in the City (Oxford, 1967); Atlas of American History (Scribner’s, revised edition, 1978); Cities in American History (with Stanley K. Schultz: Alfred A. Knopf, 1972); and American Vistas (with Leonard Dinnerstein). His latest book, written in collaboration with David Dunbar, is Empire City: New York Through the Centuries (Columbia, 2002). Professor Jackson’s best known publication, Crabgrass Frontier: The Suburbanization of the United States (Oxford, 1985), was a selection of the History Book Club and was the subject of special sessions of the American Historical Convention in 1985. It won both the Francis Parkman and the Bancroft Prizes, and the New York Times chose it as one of the notable books of the year.
Professor Jackson is the editor-in-chief of the iconic Encyclopedia of New York City, which was initially published in a single, 1373 page volume in 1995 by Yale University Press. Assisted by two managing editors, two deputy managing editors, sixty-eight associate editors, twenty-five project editors, and almost seven hundred individual authors, he worked for thirteen years to create the first major reference tool for the giant metropolis in almost a century. It was reprinted seven times and received several awards for reference excellence. The second edition, published in 2010, and 35 percent larger than the first edition, includes seven hundred illustrations, dozens of maps and tables, and more than five thousand individual entries (on 424 neighborhoods, 74 ethnic groups, 114 schools, 32 religious denominations, and 102 newspapers and magazines, for example). According to the New York Times, “no one with even a passing interest in New York will be able to live without it.”
Although he has been welcomed to Windsor Castle by Queen Elizabeth II, to Lambeth Palace in London by the Archbishop of Canterbury, to the White House by President William Jefferson Clinton, and to the Governor's Mansion in Albany by George Pataki, Professor Jackson is most at home in the subways, back streets, and gritty neighborhoods of New York City, where he has been leading all-night bicycle rides, three-hour walking tours, and all-day bus trips for decades. At Columbia, he teaches courses in urban, social, and military history. In 1989, the students of the college honored him as teacher of the year and gave him their 28th annual Mark Van Doren Award for “humanity, devotion to truth, and inspiring leadership.” In 2001, the New York Council for the Humanities selected him as New York State Scholar of the Year.
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