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Joshua Sanborn, professor of history and chair of Russian and East European Studies, presented a lecture Oct. 3 entitled “Mikhail Gorbachev and the End of the Cold War” to prepare the community and students for the former Soviet president’s visit to campus Wednesday, Oct. 19.

During his talk in the Williams Center for the Arts, Sanborn called Gorbachev one of the most significant political figures in world history and credited him with ending the Cold War.

“He did more than any other individual to bring the conflict to an end,” he said.

Sanborn discussed Gorbachev’s rise in the Communist Party and his policies of glasnost (political openness) and perestroika (governmental and political restructuring), as well as his initiation of radical arms reduction talks with U.S. President Ronald Reagan. Although he was adored by British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher and trusted by Reagan, his popularity in his own country waned, and in 1991 he was overthrown in a coup by Communist hardliners. He was restored to power, but resigned shortly after.

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  1. Reza Fakhari says:

    A couple of you have brought to my attention that my email address in my earlier post was missing an “s”. Sorry about that. It should read correctly as:
    I have sent a pdf of my dissertation to those of you who asked for it. If you email me, I’ll be glad to send you the pdf.
    Reza Fakhari

  2. Barbara Pyle says:

    Please send link to dissertation.


    Barbara Pyle, parent of senior Emily Pyle

  3. Dr. Reza Fakhari says:

    Congratulations to Lafayette College for inviting President Mikhail Gorbachev to launch the Oechsle Center for Global Education. As I did my doctoral dissertation on Gorbachev, I came to realize the world-historical figure he was and how without the Gorbachev factor the Cold War would have continued with very uncertain end-point. If any of you wish to have more of a historical perspective on the man who changed the world, beyond the wonderful lecture by Prof. Joshua Sanborn, you can take a look at my dissertation, “Getting Gorbachev Wrong.” I’ll be glad to forward to you the link to the free online copy.

    Reza Fakhari, Ph.D., Dean for Academic Affairs, Kingsborough Community College of the City University of New York,

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