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Young, Roland, 1910-1977



  • Existence: 1910-1977


Roland Arthur Young was born in Loveland, Colorado, on May 27, 1910. He earned his A.B. (English) at Baylor University in 1932 and his Ph.D. (Political Science) at Harvard University in 1940.

After college Young worked at various jobs in Washington D.C. and was for a time secretary of the U.S. Senate's Committee on Foreign Relations. From 1946-1947 he was a member of the United Nations Atomic Energy Commission.

Young was an instructor at Harvard during the period 1938-1946. He then served as an enlisted man and later as an officer at the L.S. Army's Information School at Carlisle Barracks, Pennsylvania, 1944-1946. During 1947-1948 he was a professor at Carleton College. In the fall of 1948 Young came to Northwestern University as an associate professor of political science. He attained the rank of professor in 1952. Young served as acting director of Northwestern's Program of African Studies in 1963-1964. In 1973 the University named Young the first Payson S. Wild Professor of Political Science. He was also a visiting professor at the University of Chicago, Columbia, Harvard, and Johns Hopkins.

Young's research interests centered on the formation of American public policy, African politics, Law and parliamentary procedures. He was a charter member of the African Studies Association and carried out extensive field work in east Africa, especially Tanganyika, during the 1950's and 1960's. He received a Fulbright Fellowship in 1958-1959 and a Guggenheim Fellowship in 1963-1964.

Major publications authored or edited by Young include: This Is Congress (Knopf, 1943, 1946), Congressional Politics in the Second World War (Columbia, 1955), Approaches to the Study of Politics (Northwestern, 1958), The American Congress (Harper, 1958), Smoke in the Hills: Political Tension in the Morogoro District of Tanganyika (Northwestern, 1960. British edition entitled Land and Politics Among the Luguru of Tanganyika.), American Law and Politics (Harper and Row, 1967), The British Parliament (Faber and Faber, Northwestern, 1962), and Through Masailand with Joseph Thomson (Northwestern, 1962).

Young studied law and was called to the English bar in 1969. He took a master of laws degree from George Washington University in 1973 and passed the Virginia bar in 1974. He served as commonwealth attorney for Orange County, Virginia during the mid-1970's.

Young married twice: first to Imogene, by whom he had a son, Nicholas, born in 1946; and second to Kathleen Westlake Brown, on January 18, 1952. Roland and Kathleen Young had no children.

In 1974 Young retired from Northwestern and moved to Virginia. He died on April 8, 1977, in Charlottesville, Virginia.

Found in 1 Collection or Record:

Roland A. Young (1910-1977) Papers

Identifier: 11/3/22/9

The Roland A. Young papers fill thirty-five boxes and are arranged in nine subseries: biographical materials, education files, correspondence, teaching files, research files, professional organizations files, law practice files, speeches, and publications.

Dates: 1922-1977