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The Commonwealth Club of California presents Niall Ferguson: Politics, Power and Networks

Niall Ferguson is a Senior Fellow, Hoover Institution; Author, The Square and the Tower: Networks, Power, from the Freemasons to Facebook. In a conversation filmed on January 24, 2018 with Quentin Hardy, Head of Editorial, Google Cloud.

This program is generously supported by Jackson Square Partners LLC. From his views of Islam in the West to his assertion that the United States should once again become a colonial power, conservative historian Niall Ferguson has never shied away from challenging established views or offering provocative opinions.

Now, Ferguson is posing a new challenge to the traditional orthodoxy of history. Many historians subscribe to the idea that history is driven by leaders and political elites, but in his new book, The Square and the Tower, Ferguson argues that networks of people, not individuals, are responsible for producing and promoting the great political, economic and philosophic ideas that have guided Western society from its humble origins to its present greatness.

From ancient Roman cults and the Sons of Liberty to Facebook and Twitter, Ferguson explores what other historians have overlooked: the critical networks which drove change and molded Western society into what it is today. Ferguson will even offer bold predictions on which networks currently in their infancy will come to shape the future. Ferguson is an award-winning economist and historian. Trained at Oxford, his 14 books and numerous academic and journalistic publications have garnered him international attention and acclaim. He is also an accomplished filmmaker. His first documentary, Kissinger, won the New York Film Festival prize for best documentary. Ferguson is currently the Laurence A. Tisch professor of history at Harvard University and a senior fellow at Stanford University's Hoover Institution.

Lincoln Theater presents, on select Friday’s in March, three contemporary conversations from the Commonwealth Club of California. These conversations, offered for free to the community, are being shown with the kind permission of The Commonwealth Club of California (, whose mission is to be the leading national forum open to all for the impartial discussion of public issues important to the membership, community and nation.The views of the speakers are their own.The Commonwealth Club, and Lincoln Theater, neither endorses nor opposes what is said.

This is a free event.
Show Dates + Times
Fri, Mar 23 @ 2 pm

Lincoln Theater