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Minnesota State University, Mankato
Minnesota State University, Mankato

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Feb. 26: Brian Tochterman History Lecture

Guest lecturer will discuss “Fear City on Film: Fight or Flight in Seventies New York.”

Minnesota State University, Mankato Media Relations Office News Release, 2-22-2018

Mankato, Minn. – Minnesota State University, Mankato’s Department of History is sponsoring a spring 2018 lecture series with three events that is titled “Urban America: Emerald City or Arkham Asylum, Projecting the Urban Past into the Future.”

The series will look at how Americans have long viewed urban life with a mixture of admiration and revulsion. It will explore important episodes in recent history that have led to policy changes, debate and fictional depictions of the American city and how the urban present might provide signs for the future ahead.

The lectures are free and open to the public.

The first of three lectures in the series is Monday, Feb. 26 at 5 p.m. in Centennial Student Union, Room 201. Brian Tochterman, a professor at Northland College in Ashland, Wis., will give a presentation titled “Fear City on Film: Fight or Flight in Seventies New York.”

In his lecture, Tochterman will focus on two prominent films from the 1970s era, “Midnight Cowboy” (1969) and “Death Wish” (1974). Within a week of Tochterman’s visit, a remake of “Death Wish” will open in theaters across the country.

Tochterman is the author of “The Dying City: Postwar New York and the Ideology of Fear” (2017).
The lecture series’ second event is Thursday, March 22 at 5 p.m. (room to be determined), when Wayne State University Professor and Director of Urban Studies Jeffrey Horner will present “The Detroit Rebellion of 1967: Causes, Events and Outcomes.”

The final event in the series is Wednesday, April 11 from 5-8 p.m., when Minnesota State Mankato’s Department of History invites the public to a free showing of the 1982 science fiction classic film, “Blade Runner.” After the movie, a panel of Minnesota State Mankato professors will discuss the context and inspiration for the movie, which occurs in a dark and imposing future version of Los Angeles. The long awaited sequel, “Blade Runner 2049,” appeared in cinemas within the past year.

Minnesota State Mankato’s Department of History is part of the University’s College of Social and Behavioral Sciences. Those who want more information about the history lecture series may contact the Department of History by phone at 507-389-1618 or send an email to

Minnesota State Mankato, a comprehensive university with 14,712 students, is part of the Minnesota State system, which includes 30 colleges and seven universities.

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