At several strategic points in the American past, events have cast a particular generational cohort in a special, outsize role. The first colonial *settlers* (born 1580-1600); the nation’s *founding fathers* (born 1740-1760) ; the generation that fought the Civil War (born 1810-1840); and, most recently, the so-called “greatest generation”, the one that overcame the Great Depression and won World War Two (born 1890-1920): those are the leading examples. Their lives and deeds have given a distinctive shape to our history, a recurrent and transformative charge of renewal. In each case, the immediately following generations have lived in their shadow–beholden, as it were, to their “greatness”. The regularity of their spacing is notable; with one omission they appear at 70-80 year intervals, which might suggest that we’re about due for the next one. Born 1981-1996, hello, millennials. What have you got for us?
John Demos, Samuel Knight Professor of American History Emeritus at Yale University is an award-winning author and Tyringham resident. He is the author of numerous books, including The Unredeemed Captive: A Family Story from Early America, and The Heathen School: A Story of Hope and Betrayal in the Age of the Early Republic, a 2014 National Book Award finalist and most recently Puritan Girl Mohawk Girl. His book Entertaining Satan: Witchcraft and the Culture of Early New England (1982) won the Bancroft Prize.
This program will be held in person at the Bidwell House Museum and also live streamed via Zoom. There are limited tickets available for the in-person seats. All attendees, both in-person and via Zoom, must register and The Zoom details to access the lecture will be sent a few days in advance to all attendees.
This program is made possible by a grant from Mass Humanities, which provided funding through the Massachusetts Cultural Council (MCC)
Sponsored by Jane and Charlie Johnson