American revolution topic of Jeans Lecture

A guest historian will visit Missouri Southern Thursday for the 14th annual Jeans Lecture in History.

Timothy Hall Breen, author and professor of American History at Northwestern University, received a Ph.D. in History from Yale University and an honorary master’s degree from Oxford. He now teaches at Northwest University in Illinois and is the Director of the Center for Historical Studies at Northwest, specializing in pre-revolutionary thought, material culture, and cultural anthropology.

Other credentials include 10 published books, 40 years of teaching experience at the university level, 12 awards, and 57 articles printed in various historical journals.

The speech to be given, titled “It Rained Cats and Dogs on the Day the Revolution Began: Political Ideology and Popular Mobilization on the Eve of American Independence,” will cover the material in his next book.

“Most writings about this time period are about the founding fathers, Breen said.

“I want to reinstate the people into the story of their own political history.”

His research is centered on the two years prior to the revolution, and how regular people were caught up in the decision making process. “The people living in this era faced a great risk, Breen said.

“Anyone faces the risk of sacrifice whenever they resist or think about resisting authority, in this case Great Britain. People were not only arguing about high ideas such as liberty and rights, but

also facing the real possibility of losing family members in military conflict. It is this story

of sacrifice that has gone missing from many histories of the period.”

Breen will be speaking at 7 p.m. on April 24 in Webster Auditorium.