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Lunch and Learn: The USSR and the Origins of the Helsinki Final Act • Michael C. Morgan (History, UNC)
September 15, 2016 @ 12:30 pm - 1:30 pm
The Helsinki Final Act, signed in 1975 after three years of East-West negotiations, was a landmark in Cold War diplomacy and the culmination of Soviet leader Leonid Brezhnev’s strategy of détente. But the substance of the 35-country agreement only dimly reflected the Soviets’ original ambitions. Instead, the Final Act embodied Western principles of international order—especially regarding sovereignty, security, and human rights—which defined the course of the Cold War in the years that followed. This talk will explain the Soviets’ hopes for the Final Act, their role in the negotiations, and why the agreement’s consequences were so unexpected, and so dramatic.
Michael C. Morgan is an assistant professor in the Department of History, UNC-Chapel Hill. He specializes in modern international history, especially the Cold War. He is currently writing a book on the origins of the 1975 Helsinki Final Act. Before coming to UNC, he taught at the US Naval War College and the University of Toronto, where he was the inaugural holder of the Raymond Pryke Chair.
Lunch and Learn is an interactive lecture series for CSEEES faculty affiliates to showcase their current research. The lectures are open to the public. Lunch is provided per timely RSVP.