The Displaced Persons Act of 1948: Local, National, and International Contexts - Panel Discussion
From Jeffrey Sudduth on September 26th, 2018
Co-Sponsored by Department of History, Lithuanian-American Club of Central Illinois, and the Illinois State Historical Society
This year marks the 70th anniversary of the Displaced Persons Act, which directly impacted the ethnic composition of Illinois, resulting in the influx of a large Lithuanian population in Chicago and Springfield. This panel discussion will examine how immigration at local and regional levels relates to the broader domestic and international contexts of the post-World War II period. Children of displaced persons will share their stories. The panel discussion of historical immigration policy can also inform our understanding of contemporary refugee crises and immigration debates.
Robert Vitas has a Ph.D. in Political Science from Loyola University, with expertise and publications on U.S. policy regarding the U.S.S.R. and Lithuania. He is Chairman of the Lithuanian Research and Studies Center and Executive Director, Inter-University Seminar on Armed Forces and Society.
Sandy Baksys has been a newspaper reporter, medical trade journalist, and for the last 22 years, a public relations consultant and writer. The daughter of a displaced person, she is the author of “A Century of Lithuanians in Illinois” and president of the Lithuanian-American Club of Central Illinois.
Devin Hunter is an assistant professor of US and Public History at UIS. He holds a Ph.D. from Loyola University Chicago and is currently working on a book manuscript that includes a chapter about “newcomer” migrant social programs in Chicago in the 1950s.
Heather Bailey is an associate professor of History at UIS with expertise in modern European and Russian history. She holds a Ph.D. from the University of Minnesota and her current book project concerns western European perceptions of Russia in the nineteenth century.