Every other year, BSC hosts an historical symposium. Our first, in 2009, "Not So Wild a Dream: The Legacy of Eric Sevareid" focused on North Dakota native and broadcasting legend Eric Severeid. In 2011, we hosted "September 11 Ten Years Later: Impact on the Heartland." In 2013, with "The Kennedy Legacy: 50 Years Later," we dove into the 1,036 days of the Kennedy presidency.
At every event, our purpose is to bring experts, students, the community and our employees together to explore an important period of American history with rigor, playfulness, objectivity, and an open-mind, and to resist easy conclusions or tidy narratives. We want the public to participate in our discussions, not merely passively observe the proceedings.
BSC's fourth symposium, "The '60s: Turmoil and Transformation," held Nov. 3-5, 2015, explored the themes of one of the most momentous decades in American history -- civil rights, war in Vietnam, race to the moon, political career of Richard Nixon, counter-culture, women's rights movement, maturation of television, and rock n' roll revolution. Participants gained a deeper understanding of the years between the death of John F. Kennedy in November 1963 and the fall of Saigon in 1975.
Speakers included Pulitzer Prize winner Lawrence Wright, national television expert Mary Ann Watson, feminist icon Gloria Steinem live via video feed, bestselling author Rick Perlstein, North Dakota natives and 1960s activists Mike Jacobs and Kevin Carvell, and seminal folk group The New Christy Minstrels, among many others.