Monday, July 18, 2011

Orofino teacher among 37 to spend week exploring 1950s Cold War history

Pam Danielson, a teacher at Orofino Junior Senior High School, was among 37 teachers from around the state selected to attend the Idaho Humanities Council’s 2011 weeklong summer institute, titled Are You Now or Have You Ever Been…Fear, Suspicion, and Incivility in Cold War America, scheduled for July 24-29 at the College of Idaho in Caldwell.

Supported in part by the IHC’s Endowment for Humanities Education, and generous grants from The Whittenberger Foundation and State Farm Insurance, the institute will immerse teachers in an exploration of the Cold War and its legacy for domestic and foreign policy. 

Teachers will receive room and meals for the week, texts and curriculum materials, and optional college credit. 

The week will feature lectures, panels, and films on the McCarthy hearings of the 1950s and their impact on American constitutional law and civil liberties; popular culture of the 1950s and how Cold War fears were interpreted in American literature, music, art, and film; the history of the arms race, and more.

Participants also will learn about 1950s political history of Idaho and the Intermountain West and its lingering impacts. 

Lead scholars for the week include David Adler, Director, James and Louise McClure Center, University of Idaho, Katherine Aiken, Dean, College of Letters, Arts, and Social Sciences, University of Idaho, and Ron Hatzenbuehler, Associate Dean of the College of Arts and Letters, Idaho State University. 

The week also will include several special lectures that will be free and open to the public.

Nicholas Thompson, a senior editor at The New Yorker and author of The Hawk and the Dove, will deliver the keynote address, The Hawk and the Dove: Lessons for Today’s Foreign Policy from Paul Nitze and George Kennan.”

David Walker, a Boise State University military historian, will present an overview of the Korean War.  Marc Johnson, longtime political analyst and partner with Gallatin Public Affairs in Boise, will present “The Singing Senator and Little Joe from Idaho: The Cold War and Idaho Politics.”

Ellen Schrecker, professor of history at Yeshiva University and author of Age of McCarthyism will present “McCarthyism Was More than McCarthy: Anticommunist Political Repression during the Early Cold War.”  F. Ross Peterson, Utah State University Emeritus Professor of history, will present “McCarthyism and Mountain West Politics, 1950-57.”

The Idaho Humanities Council is a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting greater public awareness, appreciation, and understanding of the humanities. The IHC hosts an institute every summer that explores different humanities topics and themes.

For more information about this summer’s institute, see IHC’s website at or contact IHC Grants & Fiscal Officer Cindy Wang at 208-345-5346, or

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