Foreign Policy Research Institute A Nation Must Think Before it Acts The Declaration of Independence: A Global History

The Declaration of Independence: A Global History

  • September 29, 2013
David Armitage

Lloyd C. Blankfein Professor of History and Chair of the Department of History at Harvard University

Cosponsored by Carthage College

With support from the Butcher Family Foundation


Once upon a time, Philadelphia made a historic contribution to the world and to the development of freedom.  The question “Did it happen in Philadelphia by accident?” gives us an opportunity to explore what precisely happened here in the pre-revolutionary and revolution periods; to ascertain the cultural, political and economic prerequisites to the development of liberal societies; and to weigh the lessons for the historic transitions of our time and for the US “export” of democracy. To assist teachers in grappling with these issues, we have assembled scholars who have made unique contributions in this field.

This weekend is also part of GlobalPhilly™ 2013, a month-long project featuring a wide variety of events  sponsored by members of the Global Philadelphia Association.

This conference is exclusively for pre-selected teachers, except for the keynote, which is open to the public (free for members, educators and students; $20 for everyone else).  (RSVP:


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The Creation of Liberal Democracy: Did It Happen in Philadelphia by Accident?