Ronald Edsforth

Academic Appointments

Research Associate in History
Chair of Globalization Studies in MALS

Ron Edsforth is Research Associate in History and Chair of Globalization Studies in the Masters in Arts in Liberal Studies (MALS) program at Dartmouth College. He taught American history at Michigan State University, Skidmore College, Hamilton College, and MIT before coming to Dartmouth in 1993. Ron has written extensively on the economic development and political culture of the United States since the Civil War.  He established his reputation in American history with a series of books about the significance of the automobile in the making of our nation’s extraordinary consumer culture. In the 1990s he was a major contributor to two PBS documentary films: America on Wheels and Divided Highways: a History of the Interstate Highways.  His book, The New Deal: America’s Response to the Great Depression (Blackwell 2000), has received renewed attention since the financial crisis of 2008.

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During the last ten years, Ron’s teaching and scholarly work has focused on histories of globalization and on peace history. He has published essays and presented scholarly papers on neo-liberal capitalism and the global proliferation of nonviolent revolution. He is the General Editor for Bloomsbury Publishing of a forthcoming six volume collection of essays titled A Cultural History of Peace. Ron is also researching and writing about the global history of human rights, and especially the rights of the child. 


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HB 6107
Master of Arts in Liberal Studies
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

General Editor, A Cultural History of Peace, six-volume collection of essays forthcoming from Bloomsbury Publishers.

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.