8:00-8:45am Coffee and Registration 

8:45-9:00am Welcome and Introduction 

David Blight (Professor, History, Yale University; Director of the GLC)

(We experienced connection problems with this first live-stream so it is incomplete.)

9:00-10:15am Keynote Address  

James Oakes (Professor, History, The Graduate Center-CUNY): “What Was the Crisis of the 1850s?”

10:15-10:30am Coffee Break 

10:30am-12:30pm Political Parties, Electoral Politics, and the Problem of Slavery 

Moderator: David Blight 

Pamela Brandwein (Professor, Political Science, Univ. of Michigan): “Rethinking Party Appeal(s) and Capitalist Context(s)”

Josh Lynn (Postdoctoral Fellow, Center for the Study of Representative Institutions, Yale): “1850s Populism: Economics or White Supremacy?”

Joseph T. Murphy (2017-2018 National Endowment for the Humanities Fellow at the New-York Historical Society): “Antislavery Politics and the Constitution”

12:30-1:30pm Lunch  

1:30-3:30pm Citizenship, Immigration, and Race 

Moderator: David Blight 

Christopher Bonner (Asst. Professor, History, Univ. of Maryland-College Park): “Truth and Black Politics after Dred Scott

Andra Gillespie (Associate Prof., Political Science, Emory): “The Civil War and Modern Public Opinion: The Case of Confederate Monuments”

Nick Guyatt (History, Univ. of Cambridge, UK), “Colonization and the Challenge of Black Citizenship”

Kate Masur (Assoc. Prof., History, Northwestern), “Insurgent Citizens and Local Resistance”

3:30-3:45 Coffee Break 

3:45-5:30 The Shock of Events 

Moderator: David Blight 

Richard Blackett (Professor, History, Vanderbilt): “Lessons of the 1850 Fugitive Slave Law”

Nicole Etcheson (Professor, History, Ball State University): “Territorial Kansans in Trumpkinland”

Joanne Freeman (Professor, History and American Studies, Yale): “The Field of Blood: Violence in Congress”

Kellie Carter Jackson (Asst. Professor, Africana Studies, Wellesley College): “Black, White, and Brown: The Shock and Silence of Harper’s Ferry”


8:30-9:00am Coffee and Registration 

9:00-11:00am Nationalisms: Proslavery and Antislavery 

Moderator: James Oakes 

Matt Karp (Asst. Prof., History, Princeton): “The Slave Power and State Power”

Dean E. Robinson (Assoc. Professor, Political Science, UMass-Amherst), “Antebellum Nationalism in Black and White”

Elizabeth Varon (Prof. of American History, University of Virginia): “Dissenting White Southerners and Antislavery Nationalism”

11:00-11:15am Coffee Break 

11:15am-1:15pm Constitutionalism and the Courts 

Moderator: Sean Wilentz

Akhil Reed Amar (Professor, Yale Law School): “The Long Shadow of Dred Scott

Michael Les Benedict (Professor of History, Emeritus, Ohio State University): “The Courts in Constitutional Politics”

Cheryl Harris (Professor- Civil Rights and Civil Liberties, UCLA Law School): “Dred Scott’s Constitutions”

1:15-2:30pm Lunch 

2:30-4:30 Concluding Roundtable: The Fate of American Democracy, Then and Now? 

Moderator: David Blight 

Martha Jones (Presidential Professor of History, John Hopkins) 

Sarah Kendzior (Writer and Political Journalist, author of The View from Flyover Country

Jill Lepore (David Woods Kemper ’41 Professor of American History, Harvard) 

Kenneth W. Mack (Lawrence D. Biele Professor of Law and Affiliate Professor of History, Harvard Law School) 

Sean Wilentz (Professor, History, Princeton)

(Video for the Concluding Roundtable is unavailable)