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Watergate and American Politics, Fifty Years On: A Conversation with John W. Dean and Timothy Naftali

4:30 am - 6:00 am

Kresge Auditorium, Visual Arts Center, Bowdoin Colleger
Bowdoin College
Brunswick, Maine 04011
United States

Fifty years ago  — on April 30, 1973 – the Watergate scandal took a dramatic turn. In one fell swoop, President Nixon fired his White House counsel, John Dean; forced the resignations of his two highest-ranking and most trusted aides, H.R. Haldeman and John Ehrlichman; and replaced his attorney general, Richard Kleindienst. In a speech to the nation that night, Nixon said he had known nothing of the Watergate coverup until the previous month and now intended to return “his full attention… to the larger duties of this office.”

Five decades later, what lessons have we learned from the Watergate experience? What shadows does it still cast over American politics? This event brings John Dean together with Timothy Naftali, historian and former director of the Nixon Presidential Library and Museum. Moderated by Bowdoin professor Andrew Rudalevige, the conversation will explore both the history of Watergate and its current-day resonance, analyzing questions of presidential power and accountability, executive ethics and transparency, the media and political polarization.

Sponsored by the Department of Government and Legal Studies with support from the John C. Donovan Fund and the Office of the President.


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