Here’s the first blog update in a long, long time, as my activities over at the Toynbee Prize Foundation have occupied most of my e-attention since 2013. This February 16, 2016, I had the opportunity to speak on my recent book, Humanitarian Invasion: Global Development in Cold War Afghanistan (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2016) at the Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Archives at New York University’s Bobst Library.
This was the first public presentation I’ve done regarding the book, and unfortunately, we were obliged to remove the audience Q&A from the taping for various reasons of legal liability. That’s too bad, since the questions were great and really pushed me to discuss issues in the historiography of development and international history that the book only begins to broach. Here’s hoping that future works will touch on issues like the changing ambitions of Scandivanian humanitarianism in Southern Africa and Asia during the Cold War, and the extent to which Afghanistan represents or does not represent a typical blend of war and humanitarian activity as one of the 1980’s “hot wars” in the Third World.
Thanks again go to Timothy V Johnson for organizing the event, as well as to Professor Mary Nolan (NYU History Department) for making the event possible.