History of the ACLU focus of government department presentation

Historian Judy Kutulas offers a historical perspective to help explain why Americans tend to confuse the American Civil Liberty Union’s apolitical intention with a partisan point of view in a Lawrence University government colloquium.

Historian Judy Katulas
Judy Katulas

Kutulas presents “The American Civil Liberties Union and Free Speech: A Brief History” Tuesday, Sept. 26 at 7 p.m. in the Wriston Art Center auditorium. The event is free and open to the public.

A professor of history at St. Olaf College, Kutulas is the author of three books, including 2006’s  The American Civil Liberties Union and the Transformation of American Liberalism, in which she traces the history of the ACLU from 1930 to 1960 and examines how it evolved from a fringe organization into American society’s liberal mainstream.

She also has written The Long War: The Intellectual People’s Front and Anti-Stalinism, 1930-1940 and explored popular culture in After Aquarius Dawned, which was published earlier this year.

A California native, Kutulas earned a bachelor’s degree in history at the University of California at Berkeley and a master’s and doctorate degree in history from UCLA.

Kutulas’ presentation is jointly sponsored by the Lawrence government department and the UW-Stout Center for the Study of Institutions and Innovation

About Lawrence University
Founded in 1847, Lawrence University uniquely integrates a college of liberal arts and sciences with a nationally recognized conservatory of music, both devoted exclusively to undergraduate education. It was selected for inclusion in the book “Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About College.” Engaged learning, the development of multiple interests and community outreach are central to the Lawrence experience. Lawrence draws its 1,500 students from nearly every state and more than 50 countries.