Ronald Edsforth

Distinguished Senior Lecturer in History
Professor and Chair of Globalization Studies in MALS

Ron Edsforth has taught History courses at Dartmouth since 1993. In graduate school at Michigan State University Ron studied the comparative history of the industrial revolutions in Europe, North America, and Japan. For many years after receiving his PhD. in 1982, Ron’s scholarly work built the case that modern America’s political exceptionalism is rooted in the early establishment of its automobile-centered consumer economy and its exemption from the massive destruction of the World Wars. He is the author of Class Conflict and Cultural Consensus (Rutgers, 1987) and The New Deal: America’s Response to the Great Depression (Blackwell, 2000), and editor of two essay collections: Popular Culture and Political Change in Modern America (SUNY 1991) and Autowork (SUNY, 1995). He was also chief historian for the PBS documentary history of the automobile industry, America on Wheels (1996), and is currently editor for Blackwell Publishers’ book series “America’s Recent Past.”

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During the last decade, Ron has developed a strong interest in the intertwined histories of world peace politics, the world wars, and economic globalization. He has taught courses on these subjects in Dartmouth’s War and Peace Studies and Masters of Liberals Arts programs, and is now Chair of Globalization Studies in the MALS program. Ron has just completed an article titled "The Global Proliferation of Non-Violent Revolutions." His next book will be a history of the world peace movement since the Hague Conference of 1899.

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201 Carson Hall
HB 6107
A.B. Georgetown University 1970
M.A. Michigan State University 1974
Ph.D. Michigan State University 1982

Selected Publications

Class Conflict and Cultural Consensus (1987).

Popular Culture and Political Change (1991) with Larry Bennett (eds.) .

Autowork (1995 ) with Robert Asher (eds.)

America on Wheels , a PBS documentary film (1996).

The New Deal: America’s Response to the Great Depression (2000).

The Cold War and the Global Proliferation of Nonviolent Politics LSE (2008).

“The Great Depression,” Encyclopedia of American Political History (2010).

Works in progress

An essay: “On the Definition of Capitalism and Its Implications for Understanding the Current Global Political-Economic Crisis:” 

A book project: The Global Proliferation of Non-Violent Revolutions

A film project: Kingmaker: James Farley and the Politics of the New Deal , Rosewood Productions.