Connect: title image
Engage the wider world. title image


Adlai Stevenson saw the world as interconnected — that all nations, all people depend on one another.

One of Stevenson's strengths was his engagement in the wider world. He reached out to people of different cultures. He sought to understand global perspectives.

He also worried about the use and abuse of American power on the world stage. He believed a positive use of that power could make the world a better place.

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Strengthening the International Development Institutions

Excerpt: "We travel together, passengers on a little space ship, dependent on its vulnerable reserve of air and soil; all committed for our safety to its security and peace; preserved from annihilation only by the care, the work, and I will say, the love we give our fragile craft. We cannot maintain it half fortunate, half miserable, half confident, half despairing, half slave — to the ancient enemies of man — half free in the liberation of resources undreamed of until this day. No craft, no crew can travel safely with such vast contradictions. On their resolution depends the survival of us all."
(July 9, 1965)

Background: In this speech, Stevenson echoed Abraham Lincoln's June 16, 1858 "House Divided" speech. "A houses divided against itself cannot stand," Lincoln declared. "I believe this government cannot endure, permanently half slave and half free." Whereas Lincoln talked of slavery, Stevenson talked of a North-South divide of global dimensions. At issue was the gap between the affluent North, mainly the U.S. and Europe, and the developing South, mainly South America, Africa, and much of Asia.

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