We are excited to announce that our very own Richard J. Milbauer Chair in Southern History, Dr. William Link has a new book coming out with UNC Press! Entitled Frank Porter Graham: Southern Liberal, Citizen of the World, this work takes a fresh look at a historical figure whose name is almost synonymous with the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Yet, Graham’s influence and leadership took him far beyond the UNC campus. Whether serving as a U.S. Senator or a U.N. negotiator, this work shows how he was a man of both consensus and conscience who became embroiled in many of the most contentious issues of the twentieth century.
Though diminutive in stature and seemingly without pretension for fame, Graham managed to become an influential leader in North Carolina and the American South through his work at the University of North Carolina, his status as a prominent New Deal liberal, and a skilled negotiator. The man whom many students and colleagues knew fondly as “Dr. Frank” guided UNC through a crisis-laden period of transformation. By probing formative moments from Graham’s tenure in higher education, the book shows how his time at UNC provided a springboard to later roles as a politician, mediator, and diplomat. Through an engaging account of Graham’s life and globe-trotting career, Frank Porter Graham shows this oft-forgotten historical figure as someone who both reflected and tried to challenge the conventions of the modern South.