Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr. '38, associate professor of History, will debate against author Howard Fast at Yale April 9, but the two men have not yet agreed on a topic.
Schlesinger, author of "The Vital Center," has refused to discuss the affirmative of the topic: "Resolved: That the United States safeguards cultural freedom for its citizens," which Fast had approved in a letter to the president of Yale's Political Union.
He said he had misunderstood the topic when contacted last week by telephone, and later rejected it because its wording favors a "negative viewpoint." He also objected to the phrase "for its citizens."
Schlesinger suggested that the topic be "Resolved: That the United States is a safeguard for cultural freedom in the world." Fast is now considering this,
"There are many topics on which Mr Fast and I disagree," Schlesinger said, "and I will debate on any one of them, if the resolution is fairly worded."
Fast, author of "The American" and other works, was originally scheduled to speak alone. However, the Political Union later decided to ask Ralph E. Turner, Durfee Professor of History at Yale, to oppose him, but Turner refused.