The Ph.D. Program in History

at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York

History Program Events

10/26 – The First Annual Judith S. Stein Lecture in Political Economy: Nelson Lichtenstein

The First Annual Judith S. Stein Lecture in Political Economy

Nelson Lichtenstein on “A Fabulous Failure:

Managing American Capitalism during the Clinton Presidency”

Wednesday, October 26, 2022, 5:00-7:00 p.m.

Abstract: When Bill Clinton became president, his campaign’s catch phrase, “The Economy, Stupid” encapsulated a commitment to the rejuvenation and transformation of the U.S. economy, especially in a world where many liberals saw Japan and Germany as the true post-Cold War victors. One policy path led toward “industrial policy,” embodied in the effort to transform the American system of health provision and “manage” trade with Japan. Both gambits failed because those industry sectors upon which Clinton liberals had banked were no match for the power of Wall Street and an increasingly radicalized Republican opposition. The door was therefore open to the neoliberalism, both global and domestic, that has come to characterize the Clinton era.

The lecture anticipates the publication in Fall 2023 of Nelson Lichtenstein and Judith Stein, A Fabulous Failure: The Clinton Presidency and the Transformation of American Capitalism (Princeton University Press).

Nelson Lichtenstein is Distinguished Professor of History and Director, Center for the Study of Work, Labor and Democracy, University of California, Santa Barbara.  He is the author or editor of numerous books, including a biography of Walter Reuther, a history of Walmart, and studies of the New Deal.

Judith Stein (1940-2017) was Distinguished Professor of History, City College of New York and The Graduate Center, CUNY.  Her publications include The World of Marcus Garvey: Race and Class in Modern Society (1986), Running Steel, Running America: Race, Economic Policy, and the Decline of Liberalism (1998), and Pivotal Decade: How the United States Traded Factories for Finance in the Seventies (2011).


The event will take place in person in the William P. Kelly Skylight Conference Room (9th Fl.) and will be livestreamed via Zoom. RSVP to and indicate in-person or online attendance.

Zoom link –

Stein Lecture flier
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