Ronald Edsforth

Academic Appointments
  • Research Associate in History

  • Chair of Globalization Studies in MALS

Ron Edsforth is Research Associate in History and Chair of Globalization Studies in the Masters in Arts in Liberal Studies (MALS) program at Dartmouth College. He taught American history at Michigan State University, Skidmore College, Hamilton College, and MIT before coming to Dartmouth in 1993. Ron has written extensively on the economic development and political culture of the United States since the Civil War.  He established his reputation in American history with a series of books about the significance of the automobile in the making of our nation’s extraordinary consumer culture. In the 1990s he was a major contributor to two PBS documentary films: America on Wheels and Divided Highways: a History of the Interstate Highways.  His book, The New Deal: America’s Response to the Great Depression (Blackwell 2000), has received renewed attention since the financial crisis of 2008.

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HB 6107


  • A.B. Georgetown University 1970
  • M.A. Michigan State University 1974
  • Ph.D. Michigan State University 1982

Selected Publications

  • Class Conflict and Cultural Consensus (1987).

  • Popular Culture and Political Change (1991) with Larry Bennett (eds.) .

  • Autowork (1995 ) with Robert Asher (eds.)

  • America on Wheels , a PBS documentary film (1996).

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Works In Progress

  • General Editor, A Cultural History of Peace, six-volume collection of essays forthcoming from Bloomsbury Publishers.

  • An essay: “On the Definition of Capitalism and Its Implications for Understanding the Current Global Political-Economic Crisis:” 

  • A book project: The Global Proliferation of Non-Violent Revolutions

  • A film project: Kingmaker: James Farley and the Politics of the New Deal , Rosewood Productions.