55 Plus Lecture: Vladimir Putin and the United States: Russian-American Relations in the Twenty-Firs

Date:  March 7, 2019; 10:00 am
Topic:  Vladimir Putin and the United States: Russian-American Relations in the Twenty-First Century
Speaker:  David Foglesong, Professor of History at Rutgers University

In the last decade Vladimir Putin has been vilified by the American mass media and many U.S. politicians, but he has also been admired by a number of conservative commentators.  Some influential Americans have argued that cooperation with Russia is impossible as long as Putin is in power, yet in the first years of the twenty-first century he sought to develop a close partnership with George W. Bush and Barack Obama was surprised by how helpful Russia was with some problems even after his relations with Putin became strained.  This talk will address conflicting explanations of the deterioration of American-Russian relations since 2001 and present a perspective on the prospects for an improvement in relations between the two countries in the years ahead. 

David Foglesong is a historian of the foreign relations of the United States whose research has focused primarily on relations between the United States and Russia.  He is the author of many articles in scholarly journals and two books: The American Mission and the "Evil Empire": The Crusade for a "Free Russia" Since 1881 (Cambridge University Press, 2007); and America's Secret War Against Bolshevism: U.S. Intervention in the Russian Civil War, 1917-1920 (The University of North Carolina Press, 1995).  Foglesong earned a B.A. in European Studies, magna cum laude, from Amherst College in 1980.  He received his Ph.D. in History from the University of California at Berkeley in 1991. Since 1991 Foglesong has been a professor of History at Rutgers University in New Brunswick, New Jersey. He regularly teaches courses on U.S. foreign policy, the Cold War, U.S. experiences with "nation building," and modern Russian history.  Foglesong has received fellowships and grants from the Gerald R. Ford Foundation, the Hoover Institution on War, Revolution and Peace, the International Research and Exchanges Board, the Kennan Institute for Advanced Russian Studies, and the MacArthur International Security Studies program. Foglesong is currently working on two book-length projects.  Together with two Russian historians, he is writing a comprehensive history of American-Russian relations since 1776.  In addition, he is conducting research for a history of American debates over "nation building" efforts in military occupations of foreign countries since 1988.