Rutherfurd Living History

The Jay Rutherfurd Living History Program produces interviews with prominent American and world leaders who have been major participants in significant international or domestic events, or movements of social change. The Program is administered by the DeWitt Wallace Center for Media and Democracy in the Sanford School of Public Policy at Duke University.

To date, the Living History Collection includes video recordings of interviews with or lectures by more than 65 prominent figures.  Recent recordings are available online at YouTube View interviews here on YouTube.  We are currently in the process of digitizing and transcribing the archived interviews, and will be adding them to this site as they become available.  Any of the recordings can be obtained by contacting Shelley Stonecipher at the DeWitt Wallace Center. Reproduction costs vary according to the length of the recordings and transcripts.


Special Collections

In recent years, the Rutherfurd Living History Program has partnered with faculty and other institutions and programs to produce collections of oral histories around specific themes.  These include:

FRONTLINE: League of Denial: The NFL’s Concussion Crisis (2013)

FRONTLINE:  The Financial Crisis (2012)

FRONTLINE: Profiles in Character: The Choice 2012 (2012)

Reporting on National Security, with Patterson Professor of the Practice of Journalism and Public Policy, Philip Bennett

Russian Reformers (2009), with Duke Program on History Public Policy & Social Change

South African Reformers (2010), with Alice Mary Baldwin Professor of History, William Chafe

Southern Rural Poverty Collection (1992), with Kevin D. Gorter Professor of Public Policy and History, Robert Korstad


Rutherfurd Living History Interviews:  1973-2009

Jane Mayer 2010 Investigative Reporter, The New Yorker
Dana Priest 2009 Pulitzer Prize-winning Investigative Reporter and Author
Seymour Hersh 2009 Pulitzer Prize-winning Investigative Reporter and Author
Alex Fergusson 2009 Member and Presiding Officer of the Scottish Parliament
Yvonne Mokgoro 2009 Constitutional Court Justice, South Africa
Albie Sachs 2009 Constitutional Court Justice, South Africa
Cory Booker 2009 Mayor, Newark, NJ
Harold Ford, Jr. 2008 Chair of Democratic Leadership Caucus
Michael Steele 2008 Chair of GOPAC
Mohamed K. Alayyan 2008 CEO and Publisher, Al Ghad, Jordan. Life History; Jordanian Media History; Independent Press
Peter Storey 2008 Professor Emeritus of Duke Divinity School; Former Methodist Bishop of South Africa Life history; Anti-Apartheid struggle in South Africa; Methodist Church Role in Anti-Apartheid Stuggle
John Poindexter 2007 National Security Adviser for Ronald Reagan; Total Information Awareness Program for George W. Bush
Zbigniew Brzezinski 2007
Anthony Zinni 2007 General, US Marine Corps (Ret.); Commander in Chief of the U.S. Central Command (1997-2000); U.S. Special Envoy to Israel and the Palestinian Authority (2002)
Mikhail Margelov 1999 Television and Elections in Russia
James Carville 2006 U.S. Democratic Party Consultant
Dennis Ross 2005 U.S. Envoy to the Middle East
Richard Kaplan 2004 Former President of MSNBC
Princeton Lyman 2003 Former U.S. Ambassador to South Africa and Nigeria
Jamie Shea 2003 NATO Director of Information and Media Relations
Robert Jordan 2002 U.S. Ambassador to Saudi Arabia
Lloyd Axeworthy 2001 Canadian Minister of Foreign Affairs, 1996-2000
Yegor Gaidar 2000 Candidate for Russian Presidency
David Gergen 1999 At-Large Editor, U.S. News and World Report; former White House Advisor to presidents Clinton, Reagan, Ford and Nixon
Phillip Gourevitch 1999 Human Rights in Africa
Judy Woodruff 1999 Senior Anchor, CNN
Afredo Cristiani 1998 Former President of El Salvador
Samuel DuBois Cook 1998 First African American Professor at Duke
Erhard Busek 1997 Central Europe (Austria)
Richard Goldstone 1997 South Africa and the UN
Jack Matlock 1997 Soviet Union
Hanna Suchoka 1997 Poland
Miguel de la Madrid 1996 Mexico
Les Aspin 1995 Political Experiences
William & Wendy Luers 1995 Experiences in Russia; Ambassador to Venezuela and Czechoslovakia; Art and Diplomacy
Terry Sanford 1995 NC Governor, US Senator Civil Rights
Jesse Jackson 1992 Personal Experiences; Civil Rights
Samuel W. Lewis 1992 Ambassador to Israel; Carter Administration
Imam W. Deen Mohammed 1992 Muslim/American Spokesman
Vernon Walters 1992 Deputy Director, CIA; Representative to UN; Ambassador to Bonn US Cold War Diplomacy
Oscar Arias 1991 Central American Politics, The Peace Plan
Walter Davis 1991 Education; Oil and the Middle East
George McGhee 1991 Diplomatic Career in Turkey, West Germany
King Mihai of Romania 1991 Rumania Before and After Communist Rule
Turgut Ozal 1991 Turkish Politics, Middle East Relations
Angier & Robin Duke 1990 Career in Foreign Service, Memories of JFK and LBJ
Yasuhiro Nakasone 1990 Japanese Politics, U.S. – Japanese Affairs
Paul Nitze 1990 Defense Issues
Jack F. Matlock 1989 U.S.- Soviet Relations
Abdus Salam 1989 Nuclear Physics
Victor Urquiti 1989 International Economics
Soedjatmoko 1989 U.S. – Indonesian Relations
Elie Wiesel 1988 Memories of the Holocaust
Robert Bork 1988
Ronald Reagan 1988
James Schlesinger 1987 Crisis Management
Robert McNamara 1986 Cuban Missile Crisis Arms Control
Charles Percy 1986 Foreign Relations
J. William Fulbright 1984 Foreign Relations, Vietnam
Dean Rusk 1981 Diplomacy, Foreign Policy, Vietnam
Ellsworth Bunker 1979 Diplomatic Career in India, the Far East, and Vietnam
Ryoichi Sasakawa 1979 Sasakawa’s Career
W. Averell Harriman 1977 U.S. – Soviet Relations
Lucius Clay 1975 Post WWII Career in Europe
W. Stanton Griffis 1974 Diplomatic Career
Earl T. Smith 1974 Cuba
John Sherman Cooper 1973 Political Recollections

For further information regarding the purchase or use of the material, please contact:
Rare Book, Manuscript, & Special Collections Library
Duke University
Box 90185
Durham, NC 27708
Tel. 919-660-5822
For information regarding the program, contact:
Shelley Stonecipher, Tel: 919-613-7306