Global Scholars Meet to Discuss the Fulbright Foreign Policy Legacy

Senator J. William Fulbright and President Lyndon B. Johnson meet at the White House, 28 July 1965.
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Senator J. William Fulbright and President Lyndon B. Johnson meet at the White House, 28 July 1965.

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — The J. William Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences and the Diane D. Blair Center of Southern Politics and Society will host 17 scholars from around the world Sept. 1-2 for the "J. William Fulbright in International Perspective: Liberal Internationalism and U.S. Global Influence" conference. During the two-day meeting, participants will discuss Fulbright's foreign policy legacy. This is the sixth symposium in the Blair Legacy Series.

The Blair Legacy Series invites senior scholars to assess the regional, national and international impact of politicians, intellectuals and social leaders. Participants in previous conferences have produced four manuscripts and a fifth is in production.  

While the conference itself will include only the participants and organizers, the public is invited to two free forums associated with the meeting.

Randall Woods, noted Fulbright biographer and the John A. Cooper Distinguished Professor of History, will welcome the scholars during an opening event at 5:30 p.m. Monday, Aug. 31, in Old Main's Giffels Auditorium.

Tom Healy, former chair and current member of the Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board, will conduct an essay-writing workshop from 9 a.m. to noon Tuesday, Sept. 1, at the Blair Library Building, home of the Fayetteville Public Library.

Conference Co-Conveners

Alessandro Brogi

Brogi's research focuses on U.S. strategic and cultural relations with Western Europe during the Cold War. His latest book, Confronting America: The Cold War between the United States and the Communists in France and Italy (University of North Carolina Press, 2011), analyzes left-wing anti-Americanism in France and Italy during the Cold War, and U.S. reactions and strategies to stop the advance of communism in both countries. It was awarded the biennial Charles Smith prize by the Southern Historical Society. Brogi is currently working on an interpretive work on US-Italian relations from World War II to the present.

He has held a senior fellowship at the Nobel Peace Institute at Oslo, Norway. He also served as lecturer and John Olin Fellow in International Security Studies from Yale University, and as a visiting professor at Johns Hopkins University's School of Advanced International Studies, Bologna Center, Bologna, Italy. A native of Florence, Italy, Brogi has resided in the United States since 1990.

Brogi is a professor of history at the University of Arkansas. He received a doctorate from Ohio University and a doctorate from the University of Florence, Italy. 

G.P. "Giles" Scott-Smith

Scott-Smith's research interests involve an exploration of the 'Transnational Transatlantic' - tracking the governmental and non-governmental linkages that have bound North America and Europe since World War II - which has expanded to include the connections between ideas, ideology and power, the 'cultural Cold War', U.S. foreign policy, the Atlantic Community, public diplomacy, intelligence history, and the role of private individuals and institutions in transatlantic relations.

He has served as an associate professor and oversaw the international relations track at Utrecht University's Roosevelt Academy,the Netherlands.

Scott-Smith is the Ernst van der Beugel Chair of Diplomatic History of Atlantic Cooperation since World War II at the University of Leiden, the Netherlands, and a senior fellow with the Roosevelt Study Center, Middelburg, Netherlands. He received a Bachelor of Arts in European and Asian studies from the University of Ulster, Coleraine, Northern Ireland, a Master of Arts in international relations from Sussex University, Brighton, England, and a doctorate in international relations from Lancaster University, England).

David J. Snyder

Snyder's research focuses on the projection of American power in the international sphere during the early Cold War. He has earned a Fulbright Fellowship to the Netherlands, the W. Stull Holt Dissertation Fellowship of the Society for Historians of American Foreign Relations, and a residential fellowship to the Norwegian Nobel Institute.

He has served on the history department's Warwick Exchange Committee, helping to administer the university's oldest student exchange program. He was given the College of Arts and Sciences Teaching Award for Non-Tenure-Track Instructional Faculty and the Mortar Board Excellence in Teaching Award.

Snyder is an associate professor of history and chair of the International House at Maxcy College, University of South Carolina. He earned a Bachelor of Arts in history from the University of Illinois, a Master of Arts in American studies from the University of Wyoming, and a doctorate in historical studies from Southern Illinois University.

Conference Participants

Neal Allen

Allen's conference paper on "Segregationism and International Statesmanship: How White Supremacy Empowered and Limited the Influence of J. William Fulbright" will complement his current research on The Power of the Segregationist One-Party South in National Politics: Civil Rights in the Career of J. William Fulbright.

He is an assistant professor of political science and pre-law advisor at Wichita State University, Kansas. He earned a Bachelor of Arts in political science from DePauw University, Indiana, and a Master of Arts and doctorate in political science from the University of Texas.

Molly Bettie

Bettie will present "The Southern Belle Paradox: Fulbright Women in the Global Intellectual Elite." Her research examines the role of educational exchange in U.S. public diplomacy practices, using the Fulbright Program as a case study, which combines policy recommendations and analysis with an updated history of the program.

She holds a Bachelor of Arts in European studies from the University of Washington. She earned Master of Arts in political communication and a doctorate from the School of Media and Communication at the University of Leeds, England.

Jeffrey Bloodworth

Bloodworth will present "The Middle Way: The Ethno-Cultural Sources of J. William Fulbright's Multilateralism." His research focuses on contemporary U.S. political history and foreign policy.

He is an associate professor of history and chair of the Department of History and Archaeology at Gannon University, Erie, Pennsylvania. He holds a Bachelor of Arts, cum laude, and Master of Arts in history from Missouri State University, certificates in contemporary history from the Contemporary History Institute at Ohio University and Nordic Summer School and the University of Copenhagen, Denmark, and a doctorate in history from Ohio University.

Benjamin Brady

Brady will present "Thorn in the Flesh or a Dagger in the Heart?: Fulbright, Johnson, and the Failure of Détente." He has served as a Mercatus Center Adam Smith Fellow and was recently named a John E. Rovensky Fellow in U.S. Business or Economic History.

He is a doctoral candidate in history at the University of Virginia. He received his Juris Doctorate from Stanford Law School and was admitted to the Virginia State Bar in 2010.

Alice Garner

Garner, an Australian historian, teacher and performer, will present "J. William Fulbright in International Perspective: Liberal Internationalism and U.S. Global Influence." She began exploring the Australian-U.S. Fulbright exchange as a postdoctoral research fellow at La Trobe University, Melbourne, Australia. She was later invited to become a consultant historian to the Australian-American Fulbright Commission and produced a series of oral histories with Fulbright scholars in the National Library and a web-based timeline of the Australian-U.S. Fulbright exchange.

She is an Honorary Research Associate at La Trobe University and a presenter on Coast Australia, a documentary series about the history of the Australian coastline produced by BBC/History Channel television. She holds a doctorate in history from the University of Melbourne, Australia.

Justin Hart

Hart's conference paper, "The Price of Imperial Thinking: J. William Fulbright as Critic of U.S. Empire," complements the research for his book Empire of Ideas: The Origins of Public Diplomacy and the Transformation of U. S. Foreign Policy (Oxford University Press, 2013). His research focuses on mass communications and U. S. foreign relations from the 1930s to the 1950s.

He is associate chair and associate professor of history at Texas Tech University. He earned a Bachelor of Arts, magna cum laude, in history from Southern Methodist University, Dallas, Texas, and a doctorate in history from Rutgers University, New Brunswick, New Jersey.

Hannah Higgin

Higgin's most recent research project, under the working title "Selling Racial Progress: Four Washington Agencies and the Struggle for Black Equality, 1949-1969," examines federal agencies such as the United States Agency for International Development, Peace Corps, United States Information Agency, and CU and their efforts to sell America as an example and ally to other nations, with racial equality as core to its values.

She teaches history at Blair Academy, a boarding school in New Jersey. She holds a doctorate in history from the University of Cambridge, England.

Lonnie Johnson

Johnson will present "The Fulbright Program in Transition, 1989-2014: From the End of the Cold War to the Obama Administration's Proposed Budget Cuts for FY 2015." Johnson has been the executive director of the Austria-American Educational Commission (Fulbright Commission) in Vienna since 1997 and positions previously served at the Austrian Academic Exchange Service, the Institute for Human Sciences, and the Institute of European Studies Vienna Program (IES Abroad).

He holds a Bachelor of Arts in the humanities from St. John's University, New York City, and a doctorate in philosophy and history from the University of Vienna, Austria.

Carla Konta

Konta will present "Making a New Leadership in the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia: The Impact of the Fulbright Exchange Program in the Light of the American Public Diplomacy Goals from 1964 to 1970." Her teaching and research interests include the American public and cultural diplomacy policies in Cold War Yugoslavia, particularly how the U.S. cultural mission, by shaping soft power policy practices towards Yugoslav leadership and public, influenced the Yugoslav "turn" to the West and the foreign relations with the U.S.

She is a doctoral candidate in the Department of Human Studies at the University of Trieste, Italy, and a teaching assistant at University of Rijeka, Croatia.

Sam Lebovic

Lebovic's conference paper is titled "The National Exceptionalism of Fulbright's Liberal Internationalism." His teaching and research focus on American politics and culture, with particular interests in the histories of media, law, ideas, and international relations. 

He is an assistant professor of U.S. history at George Mason University, Fairfax, Virginia. He received a Bachelor of Arts, with honors, from the University of Sydney, Australia, and a doctorate from the University of Chicago.

David Prentice

Prentice will present "J. William Fulbright and the Retreat of American Power: Anglo-Australian Views of Congress and U.S. Neo-Isolationism, 1968-1970." His research employs multi-archival, international research to examine questions related to U.S. foreign policy in the "long 1970s" and the relationship between American motivations and foreign actors' interpretations of these motivations and policies.

He is an adjunct instructor at the University of Arkansas-Fort Smith and an instructor at the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at the University of Arkansas. He earned Bachelor of Science in chemistry and history from Southeastern Oklahoma State University, Durant, Oklahoma, and a Master of Arts in U.S. history and a doctorate in U.S. foreign relations from Ohio University.

Nancy Snow

Snow's conference presentation, "Cultural Mediation: Fulbright's Legacy for the 21st Century," echoes themes from her 1992 dissertation, "Fulbright Scholars as Cultural Mediators: An Exploratory Study." The paper considers the role of the cultural mediator by examining the communication variables considered important to its enactment and was judged fourth best dissertation in 1992 by the NCA Intercultural/International Communication Division. 

She serves as the Abe Fellow Visiting Professor at the Keio University Institute for Media and Communication, Tokyo, Japan. She received a Bachelor of Arts, summa cum laude, in political science from Clemson University, South Carolina, and a doctorate in international relations, magna cum laude, from the School of International Service at American University, Washington, D.C.

James Stocker

Stocker's presentation on "Liberal Critic or Critical Realist? Fulbright and the 1962-3 SFRC Investigation of the Activities of Non-Diplomatic Representatives of Foreign Principals" will build on his 2015 article "Fulbright's Middle East: A Senator's Influence on American Foreign Policy, Digest of Middle East Studies" in DOMES. The piece examines Fulbright's views of and impact on U.S. policy toward the Middle East, particularly the Arab-Israeli conflict. It contributes to the literature on the history of U.S.-Middle East relations and the role of Congress in foreign policy.

He is an assistant professor of international affairs at Trinity Washington University, Washington, D.C. He received a Bachelor of Arts, magna cum laude, in international relations and foreign languages at Hendrix College, Conway. He earned a Diplome d'etudes approfondies (Master of Arts equivalent) in international relations and a doctorate in international relations at the Graduate Institute of International and Developmental Studies at the University of Geneva, Switzerland.

Kurt Tweraser

Tweraser's presentation, "The 'Operational Code' of Senator Fulbright:  Belief Systems, National Missions, Political Context" shares the name of an article he published in 2012 in the Austrian Journal of Political Science. The article examined the foreign affairs belief system of Senator Fulbright, establishes the role of international education in his belief system, and analyzes the genesis and development of the Fulbright Exchange Program in the constraining context of American governmental and political culture.

He is an author and independent researcher and consultant. He is also professor emeritus of political science at the University of Arkansas where he taught from 1966-1992. He received a doctorate from the School of International Service at the American University, Washington, D.C.

About the Blair Center: Diane D. Blair Center of Southern Politics and Society was established by an act of U. S. Congress in 2001, making it one of the rare research centers in the country to be established by congressional appropriation. It was named in honor of Diane Divers Blair who taught in the Political Science department at the University of Arkansas for thirty years. Her career outside of teaching included extensive public service as chair of both the U. S. Corporation of Public Broadcasting and the Commission on Public Employee Rights. She was also a founding member of the University of Arkansas Press. In 1992, she joined the Clinton presidential campaign as a senior researcher, after which she was appointed a guest scholar at the Brookings Institute. She returned in 1996 as a senior advisor on the Clinton re-election team. Diane D. Blair was a champion of interdisciplinary research and critical thinking, and she reached across the academic aisles often and with ease. The Blair Center reflects her academic model and strives to approach the study of the American South from a variety of angles, attempting to reveal the undercurrents of politics, history, and culture that have shaped the region over time.

About the University of Arkansas: The University of Arkansas provides an internationally competitive education for undergraduate and graduate students in more than 200 academic programs. The university contributes new knowledge, economic development, basic and applied research, and creative activity while also providing service to academic and professional disciplines. The Carnegie Foundation classifies the University of Arkansas among only 2 percent of universities in America that have the highest level of research activity. U.S. News & World Report ranks the University of Arkansas among its top American public research universities. Founded in 1871, the University of Arkansas comprises 10 colleges and schools and maintains a low student-to-faculty ratio that promotes personal attention and close mentoring.


Alessandro Brogi, professor, Department of History
J. William Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences

Darinda Sharp, director of communications
J. William Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences


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