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Lincoln Laughs at Churchill

News From the National Churchill Library and Center: Oxford Professor Speaks about “Lincoln’s Sense of Humor”

Professor Richard Carwardine, former President of Corpus Christi College, Oxford University visited Washington, D. C. on February 6th to speak at the National Churchill Library and Center (NCLC) about the sixteenth president’s justly famous sense of humor. Abraham Lincoln and Winston Churchill are both known as much for their wit as their wisdom and the supreme ordeals through which they successfully led their countries. To watch the complete lecture, please CLICK HERE.


Prof. Carwardine was introduced by National Churchill Library Director Michael F. Bishop, who previously served as Executive Director of the Lincoln Bicentennial Commission. Bishop noted that Carwardine is the author of Lincoln: A Life of Purpose and Power (2006), for which he received the Lincoln Prize from the Lincoln and Soldiers Institute at Gettysburg College. He has also received the Order of Lincoln from the state of Illinois. His forthcoming book Lincoln’s Sense of Humor will be published in November.

Since it opened last October, the NCLC has already hosted several important scholars and statesmen for talks that are free and open to the public. In addition to Prof. Carwardine, recent speakers have included Eliot Cohen on March 1st and Timothy Snyder on March 8th. Cohen, a professor at Johns Hopkins University’s School of Advanced International Studies, spoke about his new book, The Big Stick: The Limits of Soft Power and the Necessity of Military Force. Snyder, a Professor of History at Yale, spoke about his new book, On Tyranny: Twenty Lessons from the Twentieth Century. The event was filmed by C-SPAN and will air soon. The video of Prof. Snyder’s talk will be published on the International Churchill Society’s website when it becomes available.

Coming Event at NCLC:

Wednesday, April 26: David Owen, former British Foreign Secretary and now a member of the House of Lords, will speak about his new book Cabinet’s Finest Hour: The Hidden Agenda of May 1940. With keen insight, gained in part from having sat at the Cabinet table himself, Lord Owen will examine the tense Cabinet meetings that followed Winston Churchill’s appointment as Prime Minister, as he and his colleagues debated whether to negotiate with Hitler. For more information, please CLICK HERE.

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