Friday, September 30, 2016

Speaking on American Character in Portland, Oregon

I had a enjoyable whirlwind trip to Portland, Oregon last weekend to deliver the 2016 Oliver Lecture at the First Congregational Church, an event co-sponsored by the World Affairs Council of Oregon. I spoke about my new book, American Character: A History of the Epic Struggle Between Individual Freedom and the Common Good, which is something of a sequel to American Nations.

Thanks much to the excellent and engaged crowd, to Broadway Books for selling on site (and selling so many) and to the sponsors for having me. I look forward to visiting again when I have  more time.

While in town, I made the obligatory writer's pilgrimage to Powell's, the legendary Portland bookstore, which takes up an entire block and requires its cavernous rooms be color coded just to find one's way around. They now have signed copies (pictured), though Broadway Books has the grandest collection West of the Mississippi.

Also was reassured about Portland fits into American Nations' Left Coast, as the history, founders, and institutional history of the First Congregational (and, indeed, the once-rival Unitarian church up the street) illustrates the Yankee half of the equation so very well. (George Atkinson founded the church, and one of his leading biographers attended the event.)

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