Harvey Mansfield, the William R. Kenan Jr. Professor of Government, was at the White House Nov. 17 to receive a National Endowment for the Humanities Award from President Bush.
Mansfield was one of eight recipients of the award, which honors individuals and organizations whose work has deepened the nation’s understanding of the humanities, broadened citizens’ engagement with the humanities, or helped preserve and expand America’s access to important humanities resources. At the White House ceremony, another group of eight individuals received awards from the National Endowment for the Arts.
Mansfield was cited “for a lifetime of scholarship on political theory and contributions to higher education. Throughout his career, he has demonstrated conviction and courage while enriching public discourse.”
“It was quite a thrill,” said Mansfield, who attended the ceremony with his wife, his brother, and his sister-in-law. “We were ushered around the White House by military aides, and then the award was given in the Oval Office where I stood between the President and Mrs. Bush.”
“I congratulate Professor Mansfield on this exceptional recognition,” said William C. Kirby, dean of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences. “He has made signal contributions to political philosophy, masculinity studies, and civic discourse, both at Harvard and in the wider world. He is a distinctive voice in his field, on our campus, and in the broader public debate.”
Mansfield has taught at Harvard since 1962 and was chairman of the Government Department from 1973 to 1977. He has held Guggenheim and NEH Fellowships, was a fellow at the National Humanities Center and, from 1991 to 1994, a member of the National Council on the Humanities. He has written on such topics as the nature of political parties, liberalism, and the theory of executive power, and has provided new translations of Machiavelli’s “The Prince” (1998) and Tocqueville’s “Democracy in America” (2000). His other writings include “Selected Letters of Edmund Burke” (1984), “America’s Constitutional Soul” (1991), Machiavelli’s “New Modes and Orders: A Study of the Discourses on Livy” (1996), and “Machiavelli’s Virtue” (1996).