September 4, 2010

The C-Span Video Library, created by Cable and offered as a Public Service, has several videos of authors who have written about Churchill. Representing a wide range of views, they are a fine adjunct to reading or introducing the book, but also stand up well on their own.

For your own interest or as a resource for your students, C-Span offers the following:

(Free to view online; DVDs available for purchase from C-Span)

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Masters and Commanders

Andrew Roberts

At the Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum

June 19, 2010

36 minutes

Historian Andrew Roberts talked about his book Masters and Commanders: How Four Titans Won the War in the West, 1941-1945 (Harper, 2009; Harper Perennial, 2010). In his book he describes the relationships between the political and military leaders of the United States and Britain during World War II. Mr. Roberts profiles Prime Minister Winston Churchill, President Franklin D. Roosevelt, General Sir Alan Brooke, and General George C. Marshall and describes their strategic conversations and debates. The author utilized recently discovered accounts from Churchill’s war cabinet meetings and a collection of private papers from many of his peers to reconstruct the Allies war plans. He responded to questions from members of the audience at the seventh annual Roosevelt Reading Festival.


Andrew Roberts took a first class honours degree in Modern History at Gonville & Caius College, Cambridge, where he is an honorary senior scholar. His biography of Neville Chamberlain’s and Winston Churchill’s foreign secretary, the Earl of Halifax, entitled The Holy Fox was published in 1991, to be followed by the controversial, but no less well-received Eminent Churchillians in 1994. Masters and Commanders, which was published in 2008, won the Emery Reves Award of the International Churchill Society and was shortlisted for The Duke of Westminster’s Gold Medal for Military History and The British Army Military Book Award, both of Britain’s two top military history prizes. The Storm of War was published in August 2009. As well as appearing regularly on British television and radio, Roberts writes for The Sunday Telegraph and reviews history books and biography for several newspapers.


Winston Churchill: The Flawed Genius of World War II

Christopher Catherwood

At the University of Richmond

April 7, 2009

52 minutes

Christopher Catherwood talked about his book Winston Churchill: The Flawed Genius of World War II, published by Berkley Press. He examined Winston Churchill’s military decisions and policies between June 1940 and December 1941 that the author argues were disadvantageous to the Allies efforts by extending the war and destabilizing several regions that have remained in chaos. He responded to questions from members of the audience.


Christopher Catherwood is the author of several books, including Churchill’s Folly: How Winston Churchill Created Modern Iraq, published by Basic Books. He teaches history at Cambridge University and is an annual summer visiting professor at the University of Richmond. He formerly served as a consultant to the Strategic Futures Team in Tony Blair’s cabinet.

Gandhi and Churchill

Arthur Herman

At Borders Books and Music

May 15, 2008

58 Minutes

Historian Arthur Herman talked about his book Gandhi and Churchill: The Epic Rivalry that Destroyed an Empire and Forged Our Age, published by Bantam. In his book he recounts the contrasting roles Winston Churchill and Mohandas Gandhi played in the future of India. Mr. Herman relays Churchill’s desire to maintain British control of the country and Gandhi’s acts of satyagraha or civil disobedience to gain freedom for India. He responded to questions from audience members.


Arthur Herman is the author of To Rule the Waves: How the British Navy Shaped the Modern World and How the Scots Invented the Modern World. Mr. Herman was formerly a history professor at George Mason University and Smithsonian’s Campus on the Mall.


Churchill and America

Martin Gilbert

At Politics and Prose Bookstore, Washington, D.C.

October 16, 2005

1 hour, 14 minutes

Sir Martin Gilbert talked about his book Churchill and America, published by McClelland and Stewart. Martin Gilbert has been Sir Winston Churchill’s official biographer since 1968 and has written numerous books about the life and times of Churchill. In this book, Martin Gilbert explained Winston Churchill’s enduring personal and political connection to the U.S., beginning with his birth to an American mother, who was born in Brooklyn, and continuing throughout his life. Churchill’s last words to the Cabinet before retirement were, “Never be separated from the Americans.” Following his presentation, Sir Gilbert responded to questions and comments from members of the audience.


Sir Martin Gilbert is a leading historian of the modern world and the author of eighty-two books, among them the single-volume Churchill: A Life, his twin histories First World War and Second World War, a comprehensive History of Israel, and his three-volume work, A History of the Twentieth Century. (also published in a single, condensed volume). He is an Honorary Fellow of Merton College, Oxford, and a Distinguished Fellow of Hillsdale College, Michigan. See for more information.

Troublesome Young Men

Lynn Olson

At the American Enterprise Institute

September 13, 2007

1 hour, 12 minutes

Lynne Olson talked about her book, Troublesome Young Men. She described the British Parliament in the 1930s and 1940s, focusing on a key group of members that rebelled against the Conservative Party and Prime Minister Chamberlain’s stance on Hitler. Ms. Olson said it was due to the continued challenges of this group of Tories that Neville Chamberlain was forced to resign. After her presentation she responded to audience members’ questions.


Lynne Olson also wrote Freedom’s Daughter, The Murrow Boys, and A Question of Honor which she co-authored with Stanley Cloud. She was formerly a reporter in the Washington bureau for the Baltimore Sun.


Churchill’s Folly: Modern Iraq

Christopher Catherwood

At Borders Books and Music, Vienna, VA

August 10, 2004

58 minutes

Christopher Catherwood talked about his book Churchill’s Folly: How Winston Churchill Created Modern Iraq, published by Carroll and Graf. He asserted that Winston Churchill made a mistake in the creation of Iraq. He argued that instead of combining the Kurds, Arabs and Shiite Muslims into single nation, Churchill should have let each group govern themselves. Mr. Catherwood examined the decisions Churchill made regarding Iraq, arguing that they have led to the nation’s present day situation. He responded to audience questions.

Churchill’s Cold War: The Politics of Personal Diplomacy

Klaus Larres

At The Library of Congress

December 5, 2002

59 minutes

Mr. Larres talked about his book Churchill’s Cold War: The Politics of Personal Diplomacy, published by Yale University Press. During the talk, he explained how Churchill’s personal diplomatic meeting with foreign leaders helped maintain Britain’s status as a world power on par with the rising Soviet Union and the United States. The author asserted that Churchill’s preference for summits and his relationships with U.S. President Franklin Roosevelt and other world leaders created the perception that England was still a strong empire despite the fact that the past two world wars had greatly contributed to his country’s decline. After the presentation, Mr. Larres responded to questions from members of the audience.


Klaus Larres is Professor of History & International Affairs at the University of Ulster in Northern Ireland. At present he is a Distinguished Visiting Scholar at the Library of Congress in Washington, DC, and a Senior Research Fellow at the SAIS Centre for Transatlantic Relations and a Visiting Professor, School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS), at Johns Hopkins University in Washington, DC. In 2002-03 he held the prestigious Henry A. Kissinger Chair in Foreign Policy and International Relations at the Library of Congress.


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