Back to the Future: Is the World Heading Into a New Wave of Protectionism?

In the 1930s, the Great Depression reversed a long trend towards globalization: Borders were shut, trade was halted, and tariffs imposed. After the 2008 financial crisis, it initially seemed that this would not occur again. But free trade is now stirring strong political passions, with politicians and voters of all stripes blaming trade for rising unemployment. So are we heading for a new protectionist wave? Or is it possible to resurrect the free trade dream? Is free trade really as damaging for peoples' jobs as the critics fear anyway?

Festival: 2016

More on this Session

Watch and Listen: World

Human rights champion Michael Posner and Harvard Professor Samantha Power discuss the crisis in Darfur with Lee Bycel.  See more
The Global Threat of Terror — a larger perspective and an historical context. Panel includes Sir Richard Dearlove.  See more
What constitutes "human rights" today, and how does the global community view humanitarianism? What are the roles of... See more
How do people outside America view the US today? Many have strong opinions — both negative and positive — about... See more
Theologians Rev. Peter J. Gomes and Rev. Susan Brooks Thistlethwaite discuss with former Secretary of State Madeleine K... See more
The most urgent challenges of the future transcend the political boundaries and institutions of the 20th century; the... See more

Pages