James Madison Lecture to Focus on Thomas Jefferson’s Ideas About Higher Education

photo of Dr. Andrew J. O'Shaughnessy

Dr. Andrew J. O’Shaughnessy

The Wisconsin Historical Society, the Center for the Study of the American Constitution at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee Libraries are pleased to welcome Dr. Andrew J. O’Shaughnessy as the presenter of the 2018 James Madison Lecture Series. The title of this year’s lecture is, “‘The Illimitable Freedom of the Human Mind’: Thomas Jefferson’s Idea of a University.”

“Arguably more than any of the Founders, Thomas Jefferson’s ideas and contradictions resonate in 21st century America,” said Matt Blessing, state archivist at the Wisconsin Historical Society. “Jefferson’s vision for higher education is especially relevant and Professor Andrew O’Shaughnessy’s examination of Jefferson’s views will inspire anyone interested in higher education.”

Dr. O’Shaughnessy will present the same lecture twice, once in Madison and once in Milwaukee; both are free and open to the public. Tickets can also be purchased for a post lecture event in Madison.

In Madison, the free lecture will take place on Wednesday, Oct. 10, 2018 at the Wisconsin Historical Society auditorium (816 State Street, Campus Mall) at 4:30 pm. Guests may also purchase tickets to a post lecture dinner and reservations are required. Tickets can be purchased at support.wisconsinhistory.org/msnjml18

In Milwaukee, the free lecture will take place on Thursday, Oct. 11, 2018 at 4:30 pm in the fourth floor Conference Center of the UWM Golda Meir Library, 2311 E. Hartford Ave.

Thomas Jefferson regarded his founding of the University of Virginia as one of his three greatest achievements in life together with the Declaration of Independence and the Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom. Dr. O’Shaughnessy will share how Jefferson’s ideas continue to have relevance to public education in our country to this very day.

Dr. Andrew J. O’Shaughnessy is Vice President of the Thomas Jefferson Foundation and the Saunders Director of the Robert H. Smith International Center for Jefferson Studies.

The James Madison Lecture is an annual lecture series on early American history co-presented by the Wisconsin Historical Society and the Center for the Study of the American Constitution at UW-Madison. The Lectures honor the scholarly work of Dr. Merrill Jensen (1905-1980), an influential scholar of the American Revolution, beloved mentor and longtime faculty member of the UW-Madison Department of History. Funding for the Lectures is provided by the James Madison Lectures endowment which has been made possible by a generous bequest from the Estate of John A. Peters and many private donors.

This program is also generously supported by The Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation.