UVa-Wise Lecture Committee To Host David Blight

In the study of American History, the name David Blight is sure to arise at some point, especially when covering the Civil War.

For decades, Blight has committed his scholarship to analyzing the way American’s remember (and forget) certain aspects of the Civil War along with many other related avenues.

On March 31, American historian and Yale professor David Blight will lecture in the David J. Prior Convocation Center at 7 p.m. for an event sponsored by the UVa-Wise Lecture Committee and Colgate Darden Lecture fund. In addition, the event is a cultural activity credit for students and will be free to the public.

“David Blight is among our generations most distinguished historians,” said Jenifer Murray, assistant professor of history at UVa-Wise. “His numerous work on slavery and race have made important contributions to our historical knowledge and dialogue.”

Blight has taught at Yale University since 2003 where he primarily focuses on the Civil War and its aftermath. Before that, he spent thirteen years teaching at Amherst College. In 2004, Blight succeeded David Brian Davis and became the Director of of the Gilder Lehman Center for Study of Slavery, Resistance and Abolition.

As the director of the Gilder Lehman Center at Yale, Blight organizes conferences, working groups, lectures, the administering of the annual Fredrick Douglass Book Prize and many public outreach programs regarding the history of slavery and its abolition.

Blight has also recorded a 27 lecture course titled “The Civil War and Reconstruction Era, 1845-1877” on Open Yale Courses, which is free and available for anyone to take.

In 2001, Blight published his critically acclaimed book “Race and Reunion: The Civil War in American Memory” which landed him several honors, such as the Fredrick Douglass Prize, Bancroft Prize, Abraham Lincoln Prize and four other awards.

“Of the thousands of books published in the last two decades on the Civil War and Reconstruction, very few stand out for their contributions to the scholarship and their lasting impact on shaping and defining the conversation of the Civil War,” stated Professor Murray. “Blight’s argument has defined conversations about the ways in which Americans, North and South, white and black, chose to remember or forget that nation’s most defining and bloody event.”

Later this year, Blight will release his next work: a biography of Frederick Douglass that will be published by Simon and Schuster.

In addition to his lecture, Blight will be meeting with many students of the UVa-Wise History and Philosophy department before the evening event at the convocation center.

“The University of Virginia’s College at Wise is honored to host such a distinguished and acclaimed scholar,” Murray concluded

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