Cornell University

Memory and History in U.S. foreign relations in the Western Hemisphere

Monday, February 18, 2013 at 12:15pm to 1:15pm

Uris Hall, 202
Central Campus

Co-Sponsored by the Latin American Studies Program, Latino Studies Program, Committee on U.S. - Latin American Relations

During a career living abroad representing the United States, John Dickson saw first-hand the relevance of historical understanding to our relations with other countries. Since leaving the Foreign Service in 2010, Dickson began graduate studies in the Public History Program at the University of Massachusetts.
As a Foreign Service officer, Dickson specialized in public diplomacy, overseeing programs and exchanges designed to engage foreign publics on issues related to our foreign policy, bilateral relations and the contexts in which our decisions and actions are taken. Most recently, he served in Washington as Director of the Office for Public Diplomacy in the Western Hemisphere, where he organized educational activities to underscore our shared heritages with countries, throughout our hemisphere, including marking the bicentennial of independence movements in Latin America and their relationship to our own revolutionary period.
As Deputy Chief of Mission in our Embassies in Canada and Mexico City, Dickson observed almost on a daily basis the impact of our long and intertwined histories on arguably our two most important bilateral relationships, especially as we cooperate to address the multitude of issues which arise between our highly integrated societies. His previous assignments as Public Affairs Officer in Peru during a border conflict with its neighbor Ecuador and in South Africa during the transition to democracy also underscored the need to apperciate history in order to move beyond it debilitating limitations.
Prior to joining the Foreign Service, Dickson was a public school teacher in New Hampshire and a Peace Corps volunteer in Gabon, Central Africa. He is married with three children.

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Rebecca Snyder

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John Dickson

Speaker Affiliation

Professor of Sociocultural Anthropology at the University of California, Berkley

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