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The Battalion

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The Battalion

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Journalist to talk societal impact of WWII on the US

PROVIDED
Pulitzer Prize winner Rick Atkinson visits Wednesday to share thoughts on WWII and U.S. national identity.
PROVIDED Pulitzer Prize winner Rick Atkinson visits Wednesday to share thoughts on WWII and U.S. national identity.

Understanding national history has a connection to understanding national identity — a point the Glasscock Center for Humanities Research of Texas A&M hopes to instill in students through a guest lecture Wednesday by Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Rick Atkinson.
Atkinson is a journalist and historian whose study of military history has been celebrated by numerous national awards, including three Pulitzer Prizes. He will present his lecture “10 Things Every American Should Know About WWII” to analyze the political and social lessons of the war.
In his lecture, Atkinson will use historical anecdotes to draw larger conclusions about national identity, said Donna Malak, communications specialist for the Glasscock Center.
“In his presentation, he’ll share some stories and lessons about WWII while discussing its seminal moments and how the war shaped our modern world, created an American heritage, and led to great social change,” Malak said.
Joseph Dawson, professor in the Department of History, said Atkinson is especially adept to wade through the controversies that surround the history of the world’s bloodiest war.
“He is a thorough researcher and he has an excellent analytical ability,” Dawson said. “His talks have been both informative and also extremely thoughtful in order to prompt listeners to continue to look at the kinds of controversies about the war that he analyzes.”
The lecture is part of the Glasscock Center’s WWII Global Legacies initiative, which is a platform for guest speakers to discuss the long-lasting impact of the war. Richard Golsan, director of the Glasscock Center, said Atkinson is a qualified speaker for the program.
“I think that Atkinson is uniquely placed because he’s a great historian of the European theatre to really provide some clarity and context to make people understand better what happened during the war and what its importance is now,” Golsan said.
There will be a morning coffee hour at 9 a.m. Wednesday where students can have an informal discussion with Atkinson. The lecture itself will be held in the Annenberg Presidential Conference Center at the Bush School at 6 p.m. Wednesday. It will be preceded by a reception at 5:15 p.m., and will be followed by a book signing. Tickets are free and available to the public.

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