Northwestern Events Calendar


Global Lunchbox: Empire of Dune: Indigeneity, U.S. Power, and a Science Fiction Classic (Daniel Immerwahr)

When: Friday, September 25, 2020
12:00 PM - 1:00 PM CT

Where: Online
Webcast Link

Audience: Faculty/Staff - Post Docs/Docs - Graduate Students

Contact: Cindy Pingry  


Category: Academic, Fine Arts, Lectures & Meetings, Global & Civic Engagement


Please join us for the Global Lunchbox series, a weekly conversational forum hosted by the Weinberg College Center for International and Area Studies featuring work-in-progress by members of the Northwestern community.

About the Talk

Frank Herbert's 1965 novel Dune is one of the best-selling and most influential science-fiction works of all time. Among historians, it's best known for introducing many readers to ecological thinking. But Dune was also about empire. Frank Herbert worked for some of the men who ran the United States' territorial empire. He also had important friendships with people from the Quileute community, a tribal nation in Western Washington. All of these influences flowed into his writing, inspiring Dune and other of his works. Exploring Herbert's experience with empire can help us decode Dune.

About the Speaker

Daniel Immerwahr is Associate Professor in the Department of History at Northwestern, specializing in 20th-century U.S. history within a global context. His first book, Thinking Small: The United States and the Lure of Community Development (2015), offers a critical account of grassroots development campaigns launched by the United States at home and abroad. It won the Merle Curti Award in Intellectual History from the Organization of American Historians and the Society for U.S. Intellectual History's annual book award.

His second book, How to Hide an Empire: A History of the Greater United States (2019), tells the history of the United States with its overseas territory included in the story. That book was a national bestseller and a New York Times Critic's Choice for one of the best books of 2019. Immerwahr's writings have appeared in the New York Times, The Guardian, the Washington Post, The New Republic, The Nation, Dissent, Jacobin, and Slate, among other places.

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