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May 14, 2015 at 12:45 am

Schoen Returns after One-Year Fulbright Research Leave

Dr. Brian Schoen

Dr. Brian Schoen. Photo courtesy of the Virginia Sesquicentennial of the American Civil War Commission

Dr. Brian Schoen, Associate Professor of History at Ohio University, returns to campus this fall after a one-year research leave as the Mary B. Wall Washington Professor of American History in the School of History and Archives at University College Dublin in Ireland. The position is facilitated and supported by the Fulbright Commission and has been held by some extremely distinguished historians.

Schoen’s first book, The Fragile Fabric of Union: Cotton, Federal Politics, and the Global Origins of the Civil War (Hopkins, 2009), examined how the international political economy of cotton and slavery shaped Lower South politics and first-wave secession. It was awarded the 2010 Southern Historical Association’s Bennett H. Wall book prize. Much of his time in Dublin has focused on developing his current book project, which  brings together foreign and domestic policy and situates the secession winter and wartime summer (1860-1861) within an apparent epidemic of global sovereignty crises. It has been supported by funding from the U.S. National Endowment for the Humanities and Ohio University’s Baker Fund.

A distinguishing aspect of Schoen’s research leave is how active and productive his year away from Ohio University has been. During his time abroad, Schoen has made a number of media appearances, given several lectures and participated in various workshops. These include:

April, 24: The Lincoln Lecture, “The Life and Death of a Statesman,” at Westport, Ireland.  Sponsored by Westport Classical Covies, Westport Historical Society, and Westport Civic Trust.

April, 21: An appearance on RTE Radio’s Today with Sean O’Rourke, Ireland’s morning news and current event show where Schoen discussed U.S. President Abraham Lincoln and his assassination.

April 14: A lecture, “American Interregnum: Secession, the US Civil War & the 19th Century’s Crisis of Governance,” at University College Dublin, School of History and Archives Seminar. Distinguished Lecture Series. This lecture is scheduled to be uploaded to HistoryHub, which is an on-line history podcast.

March 11: A seminar, “The Problem of American Nationhood in an Era of Global Crisis,” at the National University of Ireland, Galway.

Jan. 26: A seminar paper, “Statecraft and Secession: American Nationhood in an Era of 19th Century Global Crisis,” at the John F. Kennedy Institute for North American Studies at Freie Universität, Berlin. See “Schoen Presents at Kennedy Institute at Free University, Berlin.”

Oct. 28 : A lecture, “Statecraft and Secession: The Challenge of American Nationhood in an Age of Global Crisis,” at the Rothermere American Institute at the University of Oxford. See “Schoen Delivers Paper at Rothermere American Institute at Oxford.”

Oct. 9 : A paper presented to the University of Edinburgh U.S. History Workshop and videoconferenced with the Early American Seminar, University of Virginia.

Sept. 14: An appearance on Talking History with Patrick Geoghegan on Gettysburg, the episode for which is titled “The Turning Point of the American Civil War?” See “Europe Was Watching to See What Happened at Gettysburg.”

Also during his year away, Schoen completed two publications. The first is an article titled “The Political Economies of Secession,” appearing in the June 2015 issue of the Journal of the History of Economic Thought. The second is a book chapter titled, “The Statecraft of Secession and War: How Foreign Powers Unintentionally Shaped the Start of War,” appearing in Peter Stearns edited volume, The American Civil War in a Global Context (UVA Press, 2015).

Schoen returns to Ohio University’s Department of History in the fall of the 2015-16, when he will begin his new service obligations as Assistant Chair of the department and return to his teaching obligations. His course offering for the fall term is a U.S. history survey to 1877 (HIST 2000) and a course on the early American republic (HIST 3008).  In addition, Schoen teaches courses on Civil War history, the American South, and the major-required junior-year writing and research seminar.

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