Public Lectures Series
Lectures are free and open to the public. Lectures are in McCosh 50 and begin at 6:00 p.m. unless otherwise noted. Click here to see location.
Lectures Home » Walter E. Edge Lectures
About This Series

Founded in 1957 in memory of Walter E. Edge, LL.D. 1946, who served twice as Governor of New Jersey and also as United States Senator and Ambassador to France. The lectureship is supported by a bequest from his estate assigned to the University by his family, and supplemented by additional gifts from them, as a means of bringing to Princeton eminent statesmen from abroad as well as leaders in American public life.”
Lecturers have included George F. Kennan on “The United States and the Communist Giants” (1964-1965); John Kenneth Galbraith on “Labor, Capital and Intelligence: Comparative Power in Perspective” (1965-1966); Edward Heath on “When the World Becomes 21″ (1976-1977); Isaac Asimov on “The Future of Man” (1976-1977); and Christopher Hill on “Milton and the English Revolution” (1981-1982). Edge, a self-made man who began his career as a “printer’s devil” in Atlantic City, was lauded as “Princeton’s most distinguished citizen and one of New Jersey’s greatest sons” at the time of his death in 1956.

Speakers in this series

Bernard Williams Emeritus Professor of Moral Philosophy, University of Oxford; Class of 1941 Monroe Deutsch Professor, University of California, Berkeley

The Human Prejudice
Tue, 15 Oct 2002 | Walter E. Edge Lectures

Lawrence Lessig Stanford Law School

The Creative Commons
Thu, 20 Feb 2003 | Walter E. Edge Lectures

Ziba Mir Hosseini Department of Social Anthropology, University of Cambridge and at the Centre for Near and Middle Eastern Studies, School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London

Islamic Law and Feminism: Opening a Dialogue
Thu, 06 Mar 2003 | Walter E. Edge Lectures

William G. Bowen President, Andrew W. Mellon Foundation

Reclaiming the Game: College Sports and Educational Values
Thu, 25 Sep 2003 | Walter E. Edge Lectures

Amos Oz Ben Gurion University of the Negev

Israel: Peace and War
Mon, 10 Nov 2003 | Walter E. Edge Lectures

Roy Mottahedeh Harvard University

Who are the Leaders of the Iraqi Shi'ites?
Tue, 18 Nov 2003 | Walter E. Edge Lectures

Noah Feldman New York University

The Ethics of Nation-Building: What We Owe Iraq
Mon, 26 Apr 2004 | Walter E. Edge Lectures

George Dyson Author, Western Washington University

Barricelli's Universe: Digital Computing in Princeton, 1945-1958
Tue, 05 Oct 2004 | Walter E. Edge Lecture

Kathleen Sullivan Stanley Morrison Professor of Law and Former Dean Stanford University School of Law

The Constitution and Emergency
Wed, 09 Feb 2005 | Walter E. Edge Lecture

Chinua Achebe Novelist and Emeritus Professor, Bard College

Insider Perspectives on Afro-Pessimism: Rethinking our Role as Contemporary Self-Critics.
Fri, 15 Apr 2005 | Walter E. Edge Lectures

Elie Wiesel Winner of Nobel Peace Prize Professor of the Humanities, Boston University

An Evening with Elie Wiesel
Wed, 21 Sep 2005 | Walter E. Edge Lecture

Robert E. Rubin Former U.S. Secretary of the Treasury Director, Citigroup

The Outlook for the Global Economy and the Challenges That Must Be Met
Wed, 19 Oct 2005 | Walter E. Edge Lecture

Marina Mahathir Former president, Malaysian AIDS Council

Fatal Confluences: Islam, Gender, and HIV/AIDS in Malaysia.
Tue, 28 Mar 2006 | Walter E. Edge Lecture

Cass Sunstein Professor of Jurisprudence, University of Chicago Law School

Libertarian Paternalism Is Not an Oxymoron.
Thu, 05 Oct 2006 | Walter E. Edge Lecture

Vaclav Havel former president of the Czech Republic (cosponsored by the Woodrow Wilson School and the Center for Human Values)

Mon, 13 Nov 2006 | Walter E. Edge Lecture

Atul Gawande, M.D. Surgeon, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School and Writer, The New Yorker

Mediocrity and Its Causes: A Surgeon's Notes on Medical Performance (NOTE: McCosh Hall 10)
Tue, 13 Nov 2007 | Walter E. Edge Lecture

David Remnick Editor, The New Yorker, and Writer

A Conversation with David Remnick, hosted by Professor of English Michael Wood
Tue, 20 Nov 2007 | Walter E. Edge Lecture

Nicholas Stern Author, Stern Review Report on the Economics of Climate Change, and IG Patel Professor of Economics and Government, London School of Economics

The Economics of Climate Change: Risk, Ethics, and a Global Deal
Mon, 07 Jan 2008 | Walter E. Edge Lecture, cosponsored by the Program in Science, Technology, and Environmental Policy and the Princeton Environmental Institute

Ruth Bader Ginsburg Supreme Court Justice

The Lighter Side of Life at the U.S. Supreme Court: Customs and Habits that Promote Collegiality Among the Justices. Followed by a Discussion with Princeton University Provost Christopher Eisgruber. NOTE: 4:30 p.m. in Richardson Auditorium, Alexander Hall. Click on speaker's name for ticket information. (webcast)
Thu, 23 Oct 2008 | Walter E. Edge Lecture/Marshall Harlan '20 Lecture

Walter Isaacson President and CEO, Aspen Institute; biographer (Benjamin Franklin: An American Life and Einstein: His Life and His Universe)

Einstein, Franklin, and the Role of Creativity in Today's World (webcast)
Tue, 18 Nov 2008 | Walter E. Edge Lecture

Ernesto Zedillo Director of the Yale Center for the Study of Globalization; former president of Mexico

Latin America: Two Hundred Years of Solitude (webcast)
Thu, 05 Mar 2009 | Walter E. Edge Lecture

Romano Prodi Former president of the European Commision, former prime minister of Italy, currently professor-at-large, Watson Institute for International Studies, Brown University

The Role of Europe in a Multilateral World (webcast)
Thu, 19 Nov 2009 | Walter E. Edge Lecture

Robert J. Shiller Professor of Economics, Yale University

Finance and the Good Society (webcast)
Thu, 14 Oct 2010 | Walter E. Edge Lecture

Sheila Bair Chairman of the U.S. Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC)

Some Lessons from the Financial Crisis. (Note: 4:30 p.m. in McCosh Hall 50; simulcast in McCosh 46)
Tue, 29 Mar 2011 | Walter E. Edge Lecture

Justice John Paul Stevens Retired associate justice of the U.S. Supreme Court

The Court, the Constitution, and the Justice from Illinois: Justice John Paul Stevens in Conversation with Provost Christopher Eisgruber ( (NOTE: 4:30 p.m. Richardson Auditorium in Alexander Hall. Free ticket required.) (webcast)
Mon, 10 Oct 2011 | Cosponsored by the Walter E. Edge Lecture Fund and the John Marshall Harlan '20 Lecture in Constitutional Adjudication of the Law and Public Affairs Program

Carmen Reinhart Dennis Weatherstone Senior Fellow, Peterson Institute for International Economics

A Decade of Debt
Thu, 03 May 2012 | Walter E. Edge Lecture

Michele Flournoy

Tue, 30 Apr 2013 |