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Award-Winning Professor Andrew Zimmerman Will Discuss Global Impact of Civil War

Andrew zimmermanContact: Robert Marczynski

April 8, 2014 - Dr. Andrew Zimmerman, award-winning professor at George Washington University, will explore the international impact of the Civil War at the next Marcus W. Orr Center for the Humanities Lecture at the University of Memphis. He will speak April 17 in the University Center Theatre at 6 p.m., preceded by a reception at 5:30 p.m. in the theatre lobby.

The lecture is free and open to the public with parking in the Zach Curlin garage adjacent to the University Center.

While it is often considered an event limited to the United States, Zimmerman will suggest the Civil War actually had far reaching international implications. His lecture, "Radical Life on the Mississippi: A Global History of the American Civil War," highlights the international currents at work when war came to the region in 1861.
The struggle between secession and union was joined by revolutionary socialist émigrés from Europe, African-American rebels against slavery, and evangelical anti-slavery fighters from "Bleeding Kansas." These diverse international groups brought with them their own experiences of armed struggle against slavery, fights against aristocracy and distaste for capitalism. They also brought, and advanced, a wide range of secular and religious ideas about the nature of a just society. At the same time, slaveholders sought to build an international defense of slavery by engaging the conservative socialisms of Napoleon III in France and Robert Owen in Britain. In an attempt to modernize the ideology and institutions, which supported slavery, these slaveholders looked to their counterparts in the Caribbean and Latin America. This internal American conflict came to be influenced by and to influence European, Caribbean, Latin American and African histories.

Zimmerman graduated Phi Beta Kappa from the University of California at Los Angeles before earning his PhD in history from the University of California, San Diego. He was a Mellon Fellow in History at Columbia University and went on to join the faculty at George Washington University, where he has been recognized for his research and teaching. He is the author of Anthropology and Antihumanism in Imperial Germany and Alabama in Africa: Booker T. Washington, The German Empire, and the Globalization of the New South.

Zimmerman's Lecture is co-sponsored by the interdisciplinary student group Transcending Boundaries, the Department of History, the Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures and University Public Service Funds.

More Information on this event or the Marcus W. Orr Center for the Humanities is available at

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