May 2009 saw the United States Studies Centre welcome Professor John Kasson as guest presenter at our Research Seminar. 

During the seminar Professor Kasson discussed his research on Shirley Temple and her profound effect on people during the Great Depression as well as showing the audience a number of clips fromTemple's movies.

Professor Kasson's seminar focused on one of the most popular Hollywood stars of the Great Depression, and also one of the most historically and critically neglected, in order to explore how, in a number of her films beginning with the breakthrough Stand Up and Cheer of 1934, she exemplified a spirit of courage, confidence, and cheerfulness that surmounted all obstacles and transformed the lives of those around her.

John Kasson is a Professor of History and American Studies at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Professor Kasson is a cultural historian, a field that encompasses disciplines ranging from literature and the visual arts to psychology and anthropology.