Hoffman is the author of The Wages of Sickness: The Politics of Health Insurance in Progressive America. Her presentation, titled "Do Americans Have a Right to Health Care? An Historical Perspective," will focus on the origins of the United States' current debate on the health care system. Hoffman's research is wide-ranging, from insurance and medical archives to interviews with Hurricane Katrina victims, and her upcoming book has been funded through the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.
With health care among American voters' top domestic concerns, the 2008 presidential election season has once again brought proposals for fixing a system in which more than 46 million people are uninsured. From Franklin Roosevelt to Bill and Hillary Clinton, political leaders who worked for universal health coverage have repeatedly failed. Hoffman will delve into the reasons for these failures, why we have the health care system we do, and why politicians and Americans who want to improve health care need to pay attention to this history.
The Hartje Lecture Series was established in honor of Wittenberg’s Professor Emeritus of History Robert G. Hartje, who joined the faculty in 1956 and received the Alumni Association Award for Distinguished Teaching in 1967. Widely published and the author of two books, Hartje retired in 1981 and now lives in Oak Ridge, Tenn.
"Hartje made history come alive for generations of students during his nearly three decades at Wittenberg," said Amy Livingstone, associate professor of history and department chair. "This new program will invite a guest lecturer each year who shares Dr. Hartje’s passion for narrative history."
Written By: Phyllis Eberts
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