Academic conferences constitute a major vehicle for engaging a global audience in Jefferson’s ideas.  The ICJS has organized dozens of conferences and seminars on a wide range of topics and has co-sponsored a number of scholarly symposia with the American Academy of Diplomacy, the Sons of the American Revolution, and the University of Virginia.  The ICJS has also sponsored international conferences at academic institutions in Australia, China, Cuba, Russia, the Czech Republic, Germany, Britain, Poland, Austria, and Italy; these international symposia are headlined by prominent historians, including Annette Gordon-Reed, Gordon Wood, Peter S. Onuf, and David Armitage.  The ICJS regularly hosts lectures, informal talks, and panel discussions with invited speakers, visiting researchers, and Monticello scholars.

 

2021

Fiske and Marie Kimball: Shaping Our Experience of Buildings and Objects. Please join us as we investigate the many ways Fiske and Marie Kimball shaped our experience and understanding of art and architecture in the 20th century. Each of the ten speakers in this conference will share with us a different facet of the contributions made by this “power couple” of the early twentieth century, including the critical roles they played in the preservation of Monticello. A virtual conference hosted by the Robert H. Smith International Center for Jefferson Studies, March 20, 2021. (This program is made possible by the Fiske and Marie Kimball/Monticello Fund, generously provided by the Trustees of the Jane Tarleton Smith Moore estate.) 

2020

Does Europe Still Matter to America? A virtual conference co-hosted by the Robert H. Smith International Center for Jefferson Studies and the American Academy of Diplomacy, October 24, 2020. . In a post-Cold War world, President Trump’s policies have challenged the central role of Europe in American foreign policy. Former diplomats explore these issues in light of Brexit, NATO funding and relevance, and growing trade disputes. Sponsored by the American Academy of Diplomacy and Monticello's Robert H. Smith International Center for Jefferson Studies.

 

2019

American Support for Democracy: A Path Full of Pitfalls, October 26, 2019. Promoting democracy abroad has long been a part of U.S. foreign policy. This conference – focusing especially on Russia, Ukraine, Georgia, and Iraq – explores the efficacy of that policy and whether and, if so, how it should continue to be a policy driver. Sponsored by the American Academy of Diplomacy, the University of Virginia Center for Politics, and Monticello's Robert H. Smith International Center for Jefferson Studies.

 

The 75th Anniversary of Eric Williams' Capitalism & Slavery, November 1-3, 2019, Liverpool, U.K.

A program of the Robert H. Smith International Center for Jefferson Studies at Monticello, The Centre for the Study of International Slavery at the University of Liverpool, and the Wilberforce Institute for the Study of Slavery and Emancipation 

 

2018

Interpreting and Representing Slavery and its Legacies in Museums and Sites: International Perspectives, March 19- 21, 2018
Museums and sites around the Atlantic World have developed a variety of approaches to represent the history and legacies of the slave trade, slavery, and emancipation.  Exhibitions, digital media, commemorations, monuments, educational materials, and works of visual and performing arts have made visible in popular memory and landscapes the ubiquity of slavery and its effects throughout America, Africa, and even Europe. Interpretation has varied greatly over recent decades, and continues to vary regionally as communities grapple with the tension between history and memory. Identifying resonant approaches to communicate this shared history – portraying the horrors of slavery as well as the feelings, thoughts, resistance, creativity and resilience of enslaved peoples – remains a challenge.
 

Education in the Early Republic and the Founding of the University of Virginia, May 24-25, 2018,
Marking the bicentennial of the founding of the University, this conference considers a host of issues influencing the founding and early operation of the University of Virginia, including the role of slavery, religion, architecture, books, and the formative role of Thomas Jefferson. Speakers also explore the seminal role that the University of Virginia has played in the development of medical, legal, architectural, religious, and liberal arts education. Sponsored by Monticello’s Robert H. Smith International Center for Jefferson Studies in collaboration with the American Philosophical Society in Philadelphia.

The conference will place the founding of The University in the context of educational developments in the early republic.  Alan Taylor, the Thomas Jefferson Foundation Professor of American History at the University of Virginia, will deliver the keynote address where he will discuss his current research on education in Virginia after the American Revolution.   Other speakers will include Patrick Spero, the Librarian and Director of the Library of the American Philosophical Society; Johann N Neem, the author of Democracy’s Schools. The Rise of Public Education in America (2017);  Carolyn Eastman, A Nation of Speechifiers; Making an American Public after the Revolution (2010);  Cameron Addis, the author of Jefferson’s Vision of Education (2003); Robert McDonald, the author of Confounding Father: Thomas Jefferson in His Own Time (2017);  Darren Staloff, The Making of an American Thinking Class: Intellectuals and Intelligentsia in Puritan Massachusetts (1997);  Kirt von Daacke, the author of Freedom Has a Face: Race, Identity, and Community in Jefferson’s Virginia (2012), Peter Onuf, author of The Mind of Thomas Jefferson (2007);  Neven Leddy, author of On Civic Republicanism: Ancient Lessons for Global Politics (2016) and J. Jefferson Looney, the editor of The Papers of Thomas Jefferson (Retirement Series).
 

The Spirit of Inquiry in the Age of Jefferson, June 6-7, 2018, co-hosted with the American Philosophical Society, Philadelphia, PA

Tribalism and the Perils of Self-determination, October 27, 2018
A one-day conference with panel discussions between former American Ambassadors focusing on the rise and role of tribalism in international affairs. Sponsored by the American Academy of Diplomacy and Monticello's Robert H. Smith International Center for Jefferson Studies.
 

Hamilton vs. Jefferson: On History, Freedom, and Republican Government, November 15-17, 2018. Check back in the fall for more details!
 

Independence, Revolts, and the Early Americas, December 4-6, 2018, co-hosted by the University of Notre Dame, Santiago, Chile (Closed symposium)
 

2017

Ireland, America and Empire in the Age of Jefferson, May 8-20, 2017, Galway, Connemara, and Dublin

America's Security Alliances: What's the Price? What Are They Worth?, October 28, 2017. After World War II, the United States became a major proponent of security alliances as a means to maintain the peace, but President Trump has questioned the usefulness of such alliances. Speakers at this conference discuss whether and, if so, how such alliances can serve American interests in a post-Cold War world. Sponsored by the American Academy of Diplomacy and Monticello's Robert H. Smith International Center for Jefferson Studies.

 

2016

Diplomatic Challenges for the Next Administration, October 22, 2016
In 2017, a new U.S. administration will confront a host of diplomatic challenges. The complex issues relating to American interests, values, and allies are discussed by conference speakers. Sponsored by the American Academy of Diplomacy and Monticello's Robert H. Smith International Center for Jefferson Studies.

Propaganda, Persuasion, and the Press in the American Revolution, April 2016
Hong Kong (Hong Kong University)
 

2015

Diplomacy and Elected Autocrats, October 24, 2015. Focusing on several specific cases, this conference addresses developing a global focus on American policy and effective diplomatic responses to an increasingly common foreign policy conundrum: elected autocrats. Sponsored by the American Academy of Diplomacy and Monticello's Robert H. Smith International Center for Jefferson Studies.

Thomas Jefferson: Local and Global, May 18-19, 2015
University of Milano Cattolica
 

The Marquis de Lafayette and the European Friends of the American Revolution, June 13-15, 2015. The Marquis de Lafayette and a host of European friends of the American Revolution played critical roles in the winning of American independence. In partnership with George Washington's Mount Vernon, the University of Virginia, and Monticello, the conference brings together learned speakers to discuss the role and influence of America’s European friends. Sponsored by the Sons of the American Revolution (SAE), the Friends of Lafayette, Friends of Hermione–Lafayette in America, and Monticello’s Robert H. Smith International Center for Jefferson Studies.

 

2014

Diplomacy and Violent JihadOctober 25, 2014. Increasingly American diplomats face the dangerous and difficult problem of violent jihad. This conference explores those topics in conversation with former American ambassadors. Sponsored by the American Academy of Diplomacy and Monticello's Robert H. Smith International Center for Jefferson Studies.

Natural Rights in the Post-Revolutionary Arab World:  Realities & Challenges, April 18-20, 2014
The Arab Center for Scientific Research & Humane Studies in partnership with the Thomas Jefferson Foundation, in collaboration with Ibn Tofail University.
Kenitra, Morocco

Institutions of Knowledge and the Future of Enlightenment, May 1-2, 2014
The University of Virginia and the Thomas Jefferson Foundation, linking with the Re:Enlightenment Project.
On Grounds at the University of Virginia and at the Robert H. Smith Center at Montalto 

Jeffersonians in Power:  A Celebration of the Work of Peter Onuf, May 9-10, 2014
At the Robert H. Smith Center at Montalto
 

2013

Monticello ICJS Symposium Democracy Beijing ChinaMonticello ICJS Symposium Democracy Beijing China

Diplomacy and Transitioning Governments: Critical Lessons, October 26, 2013
Co-hosted by the Thomas Jefferson Foundation and the American Academy of Diplomacy
Lord Paddy Ashdown, keynote speaker. At the Robert H. Smith Center at Montalto.
 

Federalism in the Age of Jefferson,   June 24 - 26, 2013
Discussions about Jefferson’s federalism and the European Union.
Estoril Political Forum, Portugal

DAACS Research Consortium: Opening Conference, May 22 – May 23, 2013
This two-day event brought together for an initial planning session partners in an innovative collaborative project designed to advance the archaeological study of slavery in North America and the Caribbean. The project builds on the foundation of the Digital Archaeological Archive of Comparative Slavery (www.daacs.org ), based in the Smith ICJS at Monticello, and is funded by a recent grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. Jefferson Library at the Robert H. Smith International Center for Jefferson Studies.

Arctic Archives Conference on Digital History, May 23-24, 2013
Co-sponsored with Jefferson Institute in Washington DC and Serbia
At the Robert H. Smith Center at Montalto

The Haitian Declaration of Independence in an Atlantic Context, March 7-8, 2013. The Haitian Declaration of Independence provides an important lens to consider the central questions about the making of the modern Atlantic World. Inspired by David Armitage’s global study of the Declaration of Independence, this conference seeks to contextualize the ways in which the only successful slave revolution led to the world’s second Declaration of Independence. The Robert H. Smith Center at Montalto

The Eighteenth Centuries: An Interdisciplinary Symposium , March 1-2, 2013
Examining history, literature, art, music, philosophy, and politics of the 18th century from various perspectives.
Co-sponsored by UVA and the Robert H. Smith International Center for Jefferson Studies
At the University of Virginia and the Robert H. Smith Center at Montalto

Telling the History of Slavery: Scholarship, Museum Interpretation, and the Public, February 22–23, 2013
This two-day event will feature panel discussions exploring recent innovations in slavery research and its impact on scholarship and public interpretation.
Monticello

2012

Democracy, Republicanism and State Building in the Age of Jefferson: An International Symposium, November 16-18, 2012
Co-sponsored by the Department of History, Peking University and the Robert H. Smith International Center for Jefferson Studies at Monticello 
Beijing, China

SAR Annual Conference on the American Revolution: Thomas Jefferson's Lives: Biography as a Construction of History, June 22-24, 2012
Co-sponsored by Society of the Sons of the American Revolution and ICJS
Thomas Jefferson's Montalto

Soundscapes of Jefferson’s America, March 30-31, 2012
Co-sponsored by the UVA Department of Music and the ICJS
Thomas Jefferson's Montalto

Diplomacy and Revolution, March 19, 2012
Co-hosted by the American Academy of Diplomacy and the ICJS
Thomas Jefferson's Montalto
 

2011

Jefferson and Cuba, December 5-7, 2011
Sponsored by the ICJS
Havana, Cuba‚Äč

Idealism, Statecraft, and Foreign Policy in Jeffersonian America and Russia of Alexander I, October 13-14, 2011
Co-hosted by the Russian Academy of Sciences and the ICJS
Moscow, Russia

Jefferson, Culture, and Diplomacy in the Age of Revolution, September 8, 2011
Co-hosted by the Cercle Jefferson France-Amériques and the ICJS
France-Amériques Headquarters, Paris   

Education and Diplomacy, June 13, 2011
Co-sponsored by the American Academy of Diplomacy and the ICJS
Thomas Jefferson's Montalto
 

2010

Cosmopolitanism and Nationhood in the Age of Jefferson, December 2-3, 2010
Organized by the John F. Kennedy-Institute for North American Studies and the ICJS
Berlin, Germany

Jefferson's Declaration around the World and The American Declaration of Independence and the Democratic World, August 17, 2010
Co-sponsored by the University of Canterbury and the ICJS
Christchurch, New Zealand

Curiosity Seminar, August 13, 2010
Co-sponsored by the Center for Colonialism and Its Aftermath, University of Tasmania, and the ICJS
Hobart, Tasmania

The Impact of the Declaration of Independence, August 11-12, 2010
Co-sponsored by Sydney University's School of Historical and Philosophical Inquiry and the ICJS
Sydney, Australia

Stability & Reconstruction. The Jeffersonian Diplomatic Tradition and Contemporary Security: Lessons Learned from Afghanistan, Marcy 20, 2010
Co-sponsored by the American Academy of Diplomacy and the ICJS
Jefferson Library at the Roberth H. Smith Center for International Studies

What is the legacy of Thomas Jefferson and why does it matter today, The Jefferson Symposium, April 2010
Co-sponsored by the Thomas Jefferson Foundation at Monticello and Sydney University's School of Philosophical and Historical Inquiry (SOPHI)
Sydney, Australia
 

2007

Early Modern Virginia: New Thoughts on the Old Dominion, August 17-18, 2007
In association with the Virginia Foundation for the Humanities, State University of New York-Binghamton, Hampden-Sydney College, and the Rockefeller Library of the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation
Jefferson Library at the Roberth H. Smith Center for International Studies

The Call for a New World Order: Thomas Jefferson's Separation of Religion and State, March 7-9, 2007
Archbishop's Palace, Prague, Czech Republic

Legacies of Founding: The Heritage of Early American Democracy in Contemporary Times, March 4, 2007
In association with the U.S. Embassy and the Central European University
Budapest, Hungary
 

2006

Inventing America: The Interplay of Technology and Democracy in Shaping American Identity, November 3-4, 2006
In association with the Smithsonian's Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation and the University of Virginia School of Engineering and Applied Science's Department of Technology and Society
At the University of Virginia
 

Dialogue among Civilizations, September 9, 2006
Featuring His Excellency Seyyed Muhammed Khatami, the former President of Iran
Monticello's Jefferson Library
 

Thomas Jefferson Today, April 20-12, 2006*
Texas Christian University, Fort Worth
 

 Oxford/University of Virginia Symposium, April 14-15, 2005 and March 4-5, 2006
Robert H. Smith International Center for Jefferson Studies (April 2005)
Lincoln College, Oxford University (March, 2006) 

Monticello ICJS Paris France Conference Le CercleMonticello ICJS Paris France Conference Le Cercle

Conferences and Symposia prior to 2006

  • "The Old World and the New: Exchanges between America and Europe in the Age of Jefferson" (Salzburg, Austria, October 2005)
  • Oxford/University of Virginia Symposium ( Robert H. Smith International Center for Jefferson Studies, April 14-15, 2005)*

  • "Thomas Jefferson and the Founding Fathers in Retirement" (Kenwood, March 2005)

  • "The Louisiana Purchase" (Paris, May 2002, and Kenwood, October 2002)

  • "Thomas Jefferson, Rights, and the Contemporary World" (Bellagio, Italy, June 2002)

  • "Thomas Jefferson and the Ideals of the American Revolution" (Berlin, May 2002)

  • "Thomas Jefferson and the Revolution of 1800" (December 2000)*

  • "Jefferson and His Friends" ( Paris, October 2000)

  • "Thomas Jefferson, Democracy, and the New Poland" ( Warsaw, June 2001)

  • "History and New Technologies in the Twenty-first Century" (November 1999)*

  • "The Ideas and Ideals of Thomas Jefferson: Do They Transcend Time and Place" (London, September 1999)

  • "Sally Hemings and Thomas Jefferson: History, Memory, and Civic Culture" (March 1999)

  • "Housing Slavery in the Age of Jefferson: Comparative Archaeological, Architectural, and Historic Perspective" (October 1998)"

  • Interpreting the -€˜Great Man:' The Image of Thomas Jefferson in the Twenty-first Century" (1998)

  • "A Definitive Edition of Jefferson's Notes on the State of Virginia" (September 1997)

  • "A Definitive Edition of Jefferson's Legal Commonplace Book" (May 1997)

  • "New Horizons in Jefferson Scholarship" (October 1996)

  • " Jefferson's Architectural Drawings" (May 1996)*

  • "Interpreting Slavery at Historic Sites in the Upper South" (November 1995)

  • "The State of Jefferson Scholarship" (June 1995)

  • "Major Jefferson Repositories" (March 1995)

*Collaborative Conference