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Above: Poster for the Oshinksey event on April 2nd.

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Pulitzer-Prize Winner David M. Oshinsky to Speak at UF April 2

March 26, 2008

GAINESVILLE, Fla.— Historian David M. Oshinsky, who captured the 2006 Pulitzer Prize in History for his book Polio: An American Story, will give the Gus Burns Memorial Lecture at the University of Florida on April 2, 6:30 p.m., in the Pugh Hall auditorium. He will discuss, “Polio: A Look Back at America’s Most Successful Health Crusade” and will be available to sign copies of his book. A reception will precede the talk at 5:30 p.m. The event is free and open to the public.

Oshinsky is the Jack S. Blanton Professor of History at the University of Texas at Austin, specializing in 20th century U.S. political and cultural history. In addition to his Pulitzer Prize winning book on Polio, he has authored A Conspiracy So Immense: The World of Joe McCarthy and Worse than Slavery: Parchman Farm and the Ordeal of Jim Crow Justice. He also co-authored American Passages: A History of the United States and co-edited The Oxford Companion to United States History.

“Oshinsky is a historian who engages in original historical research and writes for a general audience, not just academic historians,” said Jack Davis, UF Associate Professor of History. “His discussion about polio and the search for a vaccine will resonate with many citizens of Gainesville who perhaps grew up knowing someone inflicted with the disease or remember the long lines in grade school to receive the first polio shots or the pink-shaded sugar cube. He's an engaging speaker who knows how to tell a story and leave his audience with a new understanding of the past.”

Hosted by the Department of History and the Alexander Grass Chair in Jewish Studies, the Gus Burns Memorial Lecture was created in 1999 to honor the memory of History Professor Gus Burns. Past Burns lecturers have included John Hope Franklin, Stephen Ambrose and George McGovern.



Jack Davis, Associate Professor of History, University of Florida
(352) 273-3398 or


Buffy Lockette, CLAS News & Publications, 352-846-2032

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