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Peter Gibbon

Peter H. Gibbon is the author of A Call to Heroism: Renewing America’s Vision of Greatness (Atlantic Monthly Press, 2002). Excerpts from the book appeared in the Veterans of Foreign Wars magazine as well as in American Educator and it was chosen for the Best Books 2002 list by The Christian Science Monitor.

Dr. Gibbon is a Research Associate in Education at the Harvard Graduate School of Education and a writer whose articles and op-eds have appeared in Newsweek, The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, The Chicago Tribune, The Baltimore Sun, The Philadelphia Inquirer, and The Washington Post as well as in a variety of professional journals, such as Teachers College Record and The History Teacher.


Peter Gibbon

He has appeared on a wide range of television and radio shows, including Fox News, The Diane Rehm Show and Morning Edition. Recently, Dr. Gibbon debated historian Howard Zinn on NPR on the subject of “Teaching Patriotism in Time of War.” He was one of twelve educators from around the country invited to participate in the 2003 White House Forum on History, Civics and Service Education.

Peter Gibbon graduated from Harvard College and has a Ph.D. from Columbia Teachers College.

In his presentations, Dr. Gibbon argues that heroic ideals are fundamental to the enterprise of American liberty and to the very fabric of our nation's culture. In tracing the evolution of our collective vision of greatness from the age of our founders to today's celebrity-obsessed media age, he concludes that although our reverence for these ideals may have eroded along the way, we now have a unique opportunity to forge a new understanding of what it means to be a hero, one that will fortify the next generation of American leaders as we engage the challenges that lie ahead.

He gives speeches, seminars and workshops at business and educational conventions; in schools, colleges and churches; and at a variety of institutions. In a post-September 11 world, his message could not be more timely.

“Attendees at our annual state convention enjoyed a brisk, erudite, entertaining presentation focused on real heroes. His is an elevating talk with universal appeal.”
Ed Auble, President, The Pennsylvania Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors

“It was a most interesting and thought provoking talk, and the Q and A which followed was equally interesting...the students were absorbed by your presentation...”
William K. Kilpatrick, Boston College

“No other guest speaker in my memory has had this much impact on students.”
Robert N. Kroncke, Milwaukee Public Schools

“Your presentations encouraged valuable discussion about heroes history and popular culture, not only while you were visiting but in the ensuing days as well.”
Robert Davidson, History & Social Studies Dept., Whitman-Hanson Regional High School (MA)

“Dr. Peter Gibbon's book could not be more timely as we look around to identify those in our lives who are making up a new generation of heroes.”
George E. Pataki, Governor of New York

"Engaging and provocative. Peter Gibbon's book should be lively fare for classrooms and board rooms throughout the country."
Arthur Schlesinger, Jr., historian

"This book is a delightful Grand Tour, taking us from war to sports to great literature. You will enjoy it."
Jay Mathews, Education reporter, The Washington Post

"Fascinating and inspiring. . . Heroes, Gibbon says, 'instruct us in greatness ... [and] remind us of our better selves.' Those reminders are a gift. So is Gibbon's book.”
Marilyn Gardner, The Christian Science Monitor

"[A] compelling book that tells of an important and civic moral and psychological matter with great clarity and thoughtfulness."
Robert Coles, Harvard professor

"With the nation yearning powerfully for inspiration and leadership, A Call to Heroism could hardly be more timely."
Michael Medved, Film Critic and Nationally Syndicated Radio Host

"Gibbon [reminds] us that real heroes are not celebrities but those whose lives are devoted to the highest ideals of society."
Edward O. Wilson, University Research Professor at Harvard

Redefining Heroism for an Information Age
Ashamed of Our Past: Why Revisionism No Longer Works
Who Needs Heroes Anyway?
Bumping Into God

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