How History Helps To Inform the Present

Posted by Lindsay Krasnoff
March 3, 2011
Bretton Woods UN Monetary Conference

More:Special Conference on "Foreign Economic Policy, 1973-1976"About the Author: Lindsay Krasnoff serves as a Historian in the Office of the Historian.

In many ways, the period 1973-1976 was a critical one in the formulation of foreign economic policy. The end of the fixed exchange rate system envisioned at the1944 Bretton Woods conference and the transition to flexible exchange rates coincided with the oil crises of the 1970s. The resultant shift in the international balance of trade opened a new debate as to the role of developing countries in world affairs. In order to discuss this and other aspects of the unsettled economics of the era, the seven largest industrialized countries created the G-7 summit (Canada, France, Germany, Great Britain, Italy, Japan, and the United States). Fast-forwarding several decades, the 1999 establishment of the G20, the recent international economic crises, and continued worries over energy, oil, and trade, demonstrate how some aspects of the present parallel those of the 1970s.

On Monday, March 7, 2011, the Office of the Historian and the George Mason University School of Public Policy will convene the first conference in the Foreign Relations of the United States (FRUS) Special Conference Series, “Foreign Economic Policy, 1973-1976,” at George Mason University.

The conference is based upon the recent FRUS volume, Foreign Economic Policy, 1973-1976,which examines U.S. policy during a time of great global economic change. In addition to the themes outlined above, this volume looks at the passage of the Trade Act of 1974 and how the Jackson-Vanik Amendment linked human rights to U.S. trade policy; the launch of the Tokyo Round of General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) negotiations; and North/ South relations and commodity policy in a post-1973 oil embargo world.v The significance of the volume and the lessons to be gleaned from this period by historians, economists, and policy analysts promise an engaging event. The text of Foreign Economic Policy, 1973-1976 is available online, allowing conference attendees to read it beforehand.

Under Secretary of State for Economic, Energy, and Agricultural Affairs Robert Hormats will give the keynote address. As part of the National Security Council staff during the mid-1970s, Under Secretary Hormats authored several key documents in the Foreign Economic Policy, 1973-1976 volume. The conference will feature a presentation by the volume's editor, Dr. Kathleen Rasmussen, and an academic panel of historians, foreign policy analysts, and economists composed of Will Gray (Department of History, Purdue University), Susan Aaronson (Elliot School of International Affairs, George Washington University), Dan Hamilton (School of Advanced International Studies, Johns Hopkins University), and Kent Hughes (Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars).

For more information and schedule, please visit here.



March 7, 2011

W.W. writes:

So a question for the American Historians : - How history repeats? and How and why events repeats with a mathematical frequent precision? which measurable frequency is given on kind of events?

March 7, 2011

W.W. writes:

Nations concerned over history distortion- IRNA chief Tehran, March 7, IRNA – IRNA Managing-Director Ali-Akbar Javanfekr said here Monday that the world nations are concerned over distortion of history directed by colonialists and arrogant powers.

Javanfekr, also Presidential Advisor, made the remark in his meeting with the visiting Chief of the Evaluation Section of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Amir Piric.

'Today, important developments are taking place around the world, but certain western media distort the news of those events,' Javanfekr said.

He added that although the world media are duty bound to disseminate the true stories, some of them try to disseminate the news in a way they are interested.

He further called on the UNESCO to support the independent and justice-seeking media across the world.

For his part, Piric said UNESCO is responsible for fighting distortion of history.

Islamic Republic News Agency/IRNA NewsCode: 30284597


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