December 26th, 2017
Lincoln’s Information Superhighway
A talk by Ted Widmer
Although known for many other qualities, Lincoln was a master at navigating the increasingly complex webs of information that were available on the eve of the Civil War. Predictably, he then went on to use these skills as he led the war effort, the most complex administrative challenge faced by any president to that date.
Edward L. Widmer is author or editor of ten works relating to American history. He was recently Director of the John W. Kluge Center, Library of Congress (2016-2017), and previously held positions as Assistant to the President and Senior Fellow, Brown University (2013-2016); Senior Adviser to former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (2012 to 2013); Beatrice and Julio Mario Santo Domingo Director and Librarian, John Carter Brown Library, and Adjunct Professor of History, Brown University 2006-2012; Inaugural Director, C.V. Starr Center for the Study of the American Experience Washington College, and Associate Professor of History (tenured), 2001-2006; Senior Advisor to the President for Special Projects, 2000-2001 (advisor to President Clinton on issues relating to history and scholarship; Special Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs and Director for Speechwriting, National Security Council, 1997-2000 (foreign policy speechwriter for President Clinton); and Lecturer and Senior Administrator, History and Literature, Harvard University, 1993-1997, where he received the 1994 Stephen Botein Prize for Teaching Excellence. He received his Ph.D. in the History of American Civilization (1993) from Harvard University.