Focusing on the lives of the first class to graduate from Yale University in the 1960s, and the first to matriculate in that era, Howard Gillette, one of the founding directors of MARCH, and Daniel Horowitz examine, through the lives of their college classmates, the causes and consequences of that tempestuous era. Yale, as well as the rest of the country, took a substantial turn during this era.
Gillette, who graduated in 1964, focuses on the diverging paths through life that a relatively indistinguishable group of men followed upon graduation as their experiences placed them uneasily in an emerging cultural divide in Class Divide: Yale 1964 and the Conflicted Legacy of the 1960s.
“The book stemmed from my realization that this group of men, so wonderfully situated by the timing of their education to assume leadership roles at the peak of post-World War boom in America nonetheless splintered as the revolutions and counterrevolutions rooted in the 1960s split their allegiances and set them on opposite sides of ongoing contests on how best to exercise rights in the American system,” Gillette explains.
“So while this is a book that relates the stories of peer members of the Yale Class of 1964, including some influential people, including Senators John Ashcroft and Joe Lieberman, it seeks to further illuminate the origins the contemporary impasse in American politics,” he said.
On the Cusp: The Yale College Class to 1960 and a World on the Verge of Change, by Horowitz, who graduated in 1960, mainly focuses on how class, race, ethnicity, gender, and politics shaped his classmates’ experiences as undergraduates.
Trained in Yale’s American Studies program, Horowitz and Gillette bring to bear the broad scope of their considerable scholarship on American culture close to home: revealing how events tested established ideals of leadership and service and set new standards for Yale graduates in their personal as well as professional lives.
The discussion will be held on Thursday, October 8 from 6:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. at the Parkway Central Library, 1901 Vine Street, Room 405, the cornerstone of the Free Library system, in Philadelphia, PA.