Thursday, November 3, 7 pm: Robert Cox, “New England Pie: History Under a Crust”

New England PiePie has been a delectable centerpiece of Yankee tables since Europeans first landed on New England’s shores in the seventeenth century. With a satisfying variety of savory and sweet, author Robert Cox takes a bite out of the history of pie and pie-making in the region. From the crackling topmost crust to the bottom layer, explore the origin and evolution of popular ingredients like the Revolutionary roots of the Boston cream. One month at a time, celebrate the seasonal fixings that fill New Englanders’ favorite dessert from apple and cherry to pumpkin and squash. With interviews from local bakers, classic recipes and some modern twists on beloved standards, this mouthwatering history of New England pies offers something for every appetite.

Saturday, November 5, 2 pm: Sven Beckert, “Empire of Cotton: A Global History”

WINNER OF THE BANCROFT PRIZE

PULITZER PRIZE FINALIST

Cotton pickers, 1800s.

Cotton pickers, 1800s.

The empire of cotton was, from the beginning, a fulcrum of constant global struggle between slaves and planters, merchants and statesmen, workers and factory owners. Sven Beckert makes clear how these forces ushered in the world of modern capitalism, including the vast wealth and disturbing inequalities that are with us today.
In a remarkably brief period, European entrepreneurs and powerful politicians recast the world’s most significant manufacturing industry, combining imperial expansion and slave labor with new machines and wage workers to make and remake global capitalism. The result is a book as unsettling as it is enlightening: a book that brilliantly weaves together the story of cotton with how the present global world came to exist.

Thursday, November 17, 7 pm: Paul Brandus: “Under This Roof: The White House and the Presidency–21 Presidents, 21 Rooms, 21 Inside Stories”

Under This RoofReporting from the West Wing briefing room since 2008, Brandus—the most followed White House journalist on Twitter (@WestWingReport)—weaves together stories of the presidents, their families, the events of their time—and an oft-ignored major character, the White House itself.
From George Washington—who selected the winning design for the White House—to the current occupant, Barack Obama—the story of the White House is the story of America itself. Through triumph and tragedy, boom and bust, secrets and scandals, Brandus takes you to the presidential bedroom, movie theater, Situation Room, Oval Office and more. Under This Roof is a “sensuous account of the history of both the home of the President, and the men and women who designed, inhabited, and decorated it.

This lecture sponsored by Martha’s Vineyard Savings BankMarthas Vineyard Savings logo