For anyone trying to figure out the temper (literally!) of our times, the term “populism” is omnipresent, seeming to adopt a different meaning at every appearance.
The Center of the American West presents the influential and accomplished American historian, Michael Kazin, a professor of history at Georgetown University, and the author of The Populist Persuasion: An American History (originally published in 1995), an exploration of the changing meanings and practices of populism through the course of American history. “Populism,” Professor Kazin has written, “has an unruly past,” and that quality of unruliness has taken hold as a major feature of our times. “At best,” he reminds us, “populism provides a language that can strengthen democracy, not imperil it.” In a conversation with Center of the American West Faculty Director Patty Limerick, Professor Kazin will share his distinctive understanding of populism in the past and present, providing the audience with steady and insightful interpretations to deploy as they navigate through disorienting times.