Ronald Reagan and the End of the Cold War

Jeremi Suri
Jeremi Suri
University of Texas

Jeremi Suri holds the Mack Brown Distinguished Chair for Leadership in Global Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin. He is a professor in the University’s Department of History and the LBJ School of Public Affairs. The author and editor of eleven books on politics and foreign policy, his most recent is entitled: Civil War by Other Means: America’s Long and Unfinished Fight for Democracy. His other books include: The Impossible Presidency: The Rise and Fall of America’s Highest OfficeLiberty’s Surest Guardian: American Nation-Building from the Founders to Obama; Henry Kissinger and the American Century; and Power and Protest: Global Revolution and the Rise of Détente. A popular public lecturer and frequent news commentator, his writings appear in The New York Times, the Washington PostWall Street Journal, CNN.com, The Atlantic, Newsweek, Time, and other media. Professor Suri’s writing and teaching have received numerous prizes, including the President’s Associates Teaching Excellence Award from the University of Texas and the Pro Bene Meritis Award for Contributions to the Liberal Arts. Professor Suri hosts the weekly podcast, “This is Democracy.”

 

Overview

Ronald Reagan was one of the most unlikely and controversial American presidents, wand his tenure in office included a mix of tragedies and triumphs. The American debt climbed during his presidency, the country experienced growing inequality, and the AIDS crisis ravaged much of the American public. At the same time, Reagan triggered a renewal of American idealism and he helped to end the Cold War, which had kept the world on the edge of nuclear Armageddon for nearly fifty years. This talk will explore how Reagan did it, as well as some insights on how we should assess his presidency.

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