October 22 – 31, 2023


David Silbey
 Adjunct Associate Professor, History Department
and Director of Teaching and Learning, Cornell in Washington

To register call CAU partner, Criterion Travel at 888-328-2089

or email res@criteriontravel.com

(This CAU Study Tour is currently fully booked. Interested travelers can be added to the waitlist by calling Criterion Travel.)

On the eve of the 80th anniversary of D-Day, follow the steps to liberation

  • This 10-day study tour commemorates the legacy of the American military in Europe at the end of WWII, with evocative site visits and scholarly lectures. Download the brochure for full itinerary, tour details, and terms.

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    Education vacation

    According to The Wall Street Journal, David Silbey "excels at military history." Now, you can experience the art and architecture, culinary richness, and inspiring landscapes of these key regions illuminated with thought-provoking historical considerations and lectures by Silbey throughout.

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    London, Normandy, Paris

    Learn on location with the benefit of acclaimed author David Silbey’s expertise in American defense policy and military history. Visit key sites and stay in distinctive accommodations, some of which are featured in the stories your tour will explore.

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    Stories of valor and courage

    Be where it all happened on the eve of the milestone 80th anniversary of D-Day. Deepen your appreciation for the strategies, struggles, and triumphs of those who fought, as well as the essential political collaborations that continue to impact American policy to this day.

Travel with Ivy League faculty

  • David Silbey is an adjunct associate professor in Cornell's History Department and the director of teaching and learning for Cornell in Washington. He specializes in the industrialized total wars of the 20th century and the asymmetric responses (guerrilla warfare, insurgency, and terrorism) to those wars that evolved after 1945. Silbey has authored books on the British Army in World War I, the Philippine-American War, the Boxer Rebellion in China, and American military encounters with other cultures. He serves as the series editor for Cornell University Press' Battlegrounds: Cornell Studies in Military History. Silbey’s new book, Wars Civil and Great: The American Experience in the Civil War and World War I, will be available from University Press of Kansas in August 2023.

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    “David J. Silbey has a remarkable capacity for explaining a war from the perspective of various participants and for presenting in a clear and efficient way the political, cultural, strategic, and military factors that shape the course of a war."

    —Alan Lessoff, Professor of History, Illinois State University

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    "...a gemlike narrative that is as page-turning as it is succinct.”

    —Walter LaFeber, Tisch University Professor Emeritus, Cornell University
    reviewing The Boxer Rebellion and the Great Game in China: A History by David Silbey

Learn on location: the lectures

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    The Road to Normandy

    The road to Normandy was a long and difficult one for the Allied powers. We will talk about the path of the Second World War and how Roosevelt, Churchill, and others planned and prepared to attack the most heavily defended part of “Festung Europa” (Fortress Europe) and open a second front in the war against Nazi Germany.

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    The Day Itself

    On D-Day, all the planning and preparation meant nothing if the Allied soldiers could not force their way onto the beaches of France against a determined German resistance. We will talk about how June 6 played out at the ground level and what the fighting was like for the soldiers. We will reflect upon how success was won, sometimes from the jaws of defeat, by a few determined men.

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    The Breakout

    Winning a beachhead was only the first step toward the final defeat of Nazi Germany. Getting off the beach and marching towards Paris (and Berlin) was the next. We will look at how the Allied advance got bogged down in the “bocage” terrain of Normandy and how eventually they were able to break out and race eastwards, chasing a desperately fleeing German army.

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    The Normandy campaign broke the hold of Nazi Germany on Western Europe. It was the beginning of the end of the war. We will look forward to the final Allied triumph and look backward to discuss the campaign, analyze how it happened, and talk about what we’ve seen on the beaches, on the landing grounds, and in the fields and hills. Together, we will discuss how these places and events shape our perception of one of the most critical moments in the Second World War.

Travel with energy and knowledge

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    “Mr. Silbey tells this little-known story in exemplary fashion.”

    ―Adam Kirsch, The New York Sun
    reviewing A War of Frontier and Empire: The Philippine-American War, 1899-1902 by David Silbey

  • “Ironic, bloody, full of foreshadowing: a solid work.”

    ―Kirkus Reviews
    starred review of A War of Frontier and Empire: The Philippine-American War, 1899-1902 by David Silbey

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    "Silbey offers a smart and provocative argument for this war's complexity, brutality, and centrality to American as well as Filipino history. Everyone with an interest in American habits of empire should read it."

    ―Eric Rauchway, author of Blessed Among Nations
    reviewing A War of Frontier and Empire: The Philippine-American War, 1899-1902 by David Silbey

Travel farther with Cornell alumni, family, friends, and faculty

Another way to travel with Cornell

  • November 26 - December 12, 2023
    Offered in partnership with Odysseys Unlimited 888-370-6765
    Exclusive to Cornell.
    (does not include faculty)


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