Co-Sponsored by Center for the Study of America and the West
The decision to go to war is the most momentous any leader, any nation, can make. For the United States, the process of declaring war, enshrined in the constitution, has always been a source of domestic political dispute as well as geopolitical interest, as every conflict raised anew the fundamental question of whether and how the United States should deal with the wider world. Presidents and Congresses have not always agreed on the nature of the threat and the proper response. Often, the decision formally to declare war came only after a buildup of pressure that broke domestic partisan resistance. Since 1942, questions of war and peace have become even more complicated, as Presidents have used their executive authority to commit American troops to fighting without presenting Congress with a formal vote to declare war.
Why has the United States gone to war? What were the casus belli? Who advocated for war and who resisted—and why did they do so? Who decided and why? What were the strategic/military considerations? How did each experience with going to war shape the discussion of subsequent conflicts?
These vital questions will guide the discussion at our next History Institute for Teachers.
WHAT PARTICIPANTS RECEIVE Forty participants will be selected to receive:
complimentary overnight accommodations for those outside of the Chicago vicinity (Friday and Saturday nights, as needed);
complimentary lunch and dinner on Saturday, plus continental breakfast on Saturday and Sunday
assistance in designing curriculum and special projects based on the History Institute;
stipends of $200 for well-developed lesson plans for posting on our website that effectively utilize the experience of the weekend conference, or documentation of in-service presentations based on the weekend;
partial travel reimbursements (up to $250) for participants outside the vicinity of the conference center;
subscription to E-Notes, FPRI’s weekly bulletin; and Footnotes, FPRI’s bulletin for high school teachers.
a certificate of participation in a program offering 12 hours of instruction. In addition, for those interested, college credit is available for a small fee through our cooperating institution, Carthage College in Kenosha, Wisconsin.
Videotapes of the entire conference will be posted subsequently on our website, plus texts of selected lectures.