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Patterson presents 'Short History of Freedom'

Tuesday through Thursday, Feb. 24-26, 2009, 8 p.m. McCosh 10

"A Short History of Freedom: The Origins and Institutionalization of Freedom" is the theme of three lectures to be delivered by sociologist Orlando Patterson at 8 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday, Feb. 24-26, in McCosh 10.

Patterson's talks will examine the history of the Western concept of freedom, focusing especially on the paradoxes of its development in America, where slavery and an ardent defense of democracy coexisted at the birth of the nation.

Known for his work regarding issues of race, gender, and poverty, Patterson is the John Cowles Professor of Sociology at Harvard University. Between 1972 and 1979 he served as an adviser on social policy to Michael Manley, then prime minister of Patterson's home country of Jamaica. Patterson's books include "Slavery and Social Death" (1982), "Freedom in the Making of Western Culture" (1991), which won the National Book Award for nonfiction, and "The Ordeal of Integration" (1997). He also has published three novels and is a frequent contributor of essays to The New York Times, Time and Newsweek magazines and other major publications.

The talks are designated as Stafford Little Lectures sponsored by the University Public Lecture Series and Princeton University Press.

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