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Research Historian, Alumnus to Discuss ‘From Memory to History’ at Ohio Wesleyan
Pete Kakel, Ph.D., Class of 1969, to Examine Impact of 1960s Activism on the OWU Campus

March 15, 2010

Pete Kakel ’69.
Photo courtesy of Pete Kakel
DELAWARE, OH – From civil rights marches to Vietnam War protests on and off college campuses, America in the 1960s was defined by public activism. Research historian Pete Kakel, Ph.D., will discuss the impact of this activism at Ohio Wesleyan University when he presents “From Memory to History: Ohio Wesleyan in the Late 1960s.”

Kakel, a 1969 Ohio Wesleyan graduate, will speak at 7:30 p.m. April 1, in Benes Room B of Hamilton-Williams Campus Center, 40 Rowland Ave. His presentation represents the 26th Annual Joseph and Edith Vogel Lecture, which seeks to promote a better understanding of the history of Delaware and surrounding area. The event, coordinated by the Ohio Wesleyan Department of History, is free and open to the public.

At Ohio Wesleyan, Kakel majored in history and was a member of the Phi Alpha Theta history honor society, Sigma Phi Epsilon fraternity, Battling Bishop men’s soccer team, student senate, and Young Democrats club. He worked for 39 years as an insurance broker, taking periodic sabbaticals and leaves of absence to pursue his interests in history and historical inquiry.

In 2003, he earned a master’s degree in liberal arts from The Johns Hopkins University. In 2004, he earned a master’s degree in Holocaust studies (with distinction) from the University of London, and, in 2009, he earned a doctorate in modern history from the University of London.

Today, Kakel lives in Baltimore, and his primary research interest is the history and historiography of genocide. His first book, “The American West and the Nazi East: A Comparative and Interpretive Perspective,” currently is under contract with Palgrave Macmillan, a global academic publisher.

Established in 1985, Ohio Wesleyan’s Joseph and Edith Vogel Lecture Series is made possible by a generous gift from their son, Ezra F. Vogel, Ph.D., a 1950 Ohio Wesleyan graduate, native of Delaware, Ohio, and retired professor of East Asian Studies at Harvard University.


Ohio Wesleyan University is one of the nation’s premier small, private universities, with more than 90 undergraduate majors, sequences, and courses of study, and 22 Division III varsity sports. Located in Delaware, Ohio, just minutes north of Ohio’s capital and largest city, Columbus, the university combines a globally focused curriculum with off-campus learning and leadership opportunities that translate classroom theory into real-world practice. OWU’s close-knit community of 1,850 students represents 45 states and 57 countries. Ohio Wesleyan earned a 2009 Presidential Award for Excellence in General Community Service, is featured in the book “Colleges That Change Lives,” and is included on the “best colleges” lists of U.S. News & World Report and The Princeton Review. Learn more at www.owu.edu.