Tuesday, September 15, 2015
7pm – 8:30pm
Oregon Historical Society
Free and open to the public
The life of prominent Oregon political leader Monroe Sweetland — a nationally prominent figure whose fights bequeathed to modern America important legislation that shaped its political landscape — spans the spectrum of twentieth-century America. Racial and economic inequalities motivated much of Sweetland's civic life, including his lifelong memberships in the American Civil Liberties Committee, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, the Urban League, the Japanese American Citizens League, and the Red Cross, where Sweetland worked repatriating American prisoners of war after Japan's surrender.
Historian William G. Robbins illuminates the wrenching transformation of American political culture in A Man for All Seasons. Robbins's portrait is holistic, exploring Sweetland's socialist beginnings, inconsistencies in his politics—especially during the Cold War—and his regional legacy. He was the most important person in the resurgence of the modern, liberal Oregon Democratic Party from the late 1940s to the 1960s.
William G. Robbins is emeritus distinguished professor at Oregon State University, where he was professor of history from 1971 until 2002. He is the author and editor of books on Oregon and the Pacific Northwest, including Landscapes of Promise: The Oregon Story, 1800-1940 and Oregon, This Storied Land.