CGS’s first Global Conversations online event, Saturday, April 22 from 12-1:30 EST with Samuel Zipp to discuss his book, The Idealist: Wendell Willkie’s Wartime Quest to Build One World (you can purchase at the Harvard book store. In August 1942, as the threat of #fascism swept the world, a charismatic former Republican presidential contender, Wendell Willkie, took an unprecedented airplane journey around the world to visit battlefronts in Africa, the Middle East, Russia, and China. In One World, the runaway bestseller he published on his return, Willkie challenged Americans to resist the “America first” doctrine and warned of the dangers of “narrow nationalism”. He urged citizens to end colonialism and embrace, “equality of opportunity for every race and every nation”. Zipp argues that Willkie’s “warnings about the perils of racially charged ‘narrow nationalism’ have never been more indispensable. As the United States reaches the end of its long turn as a great global power, the quandaries of American exceptionalism he faced remain ours today, and his example may yet offer us undiscovered resources for living in a ‘one world’ he heralded more than three-quarters of a century ago.” “The term Willkie helped to put into common circulation -’one world’ –would become shorthand for the disruptive charge of worldly connection set off by the war. Over the years Willkie’s name would fade away but ‘one world’ would be adopted by world government advocates, anti-imperialists, environmentalists, and even corporate marketers to signify the promise of times in which global shrinkage offered new contracts and new ideas to offset the dangers of war, xenophobia and racism.” Samuel Zipp is a cultural and urban historian at Brown University. He has written for the New York Times, the Washington Post, n+1, The Baffler, and The Nation and is the author of Manhattan Projects: The Rise and Fall of Urban Renewal Cold War New York. He also coedited a collection of the writings of Jane Jacobs.