Department News

June 30, 2020

Congratulations to Yuri Doolan, Assistant Professor in the Department of History and the Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies Program (WGS).  He received the Qualey Award for his article titled, "Transpacific Camptowns: Korean Women, US Army Bases, and Military Prostitution in America." You may read the article here.

June 23, 2020

Abby Cooper studies how African Americans living in Civil War-era refugee camps imagined - and constucted - their futures after slavery.  Her work is featured in the Summer issue of Brandeis Magazine. 

May 29, 2020

The Department of History was well represented among the teaching awards this year, with two faculty recipients among the five prizes awarded by Brandeis. Hannah Muller was awarded the Michael L. Walzer '56 Award for Teaching, honoring a faculty member who combines exceptional scholarship with inspired teaching. This marks the second year in a row that a History faculty member has received this award, with  Naghmeh Sohrabi having received the honor last year.  Also this year, Michael Willrich received the Jeanette Lerman-Neubauer '69 and Joseph Neubauer Prize for Excellence in Teaching and Mentoring. 

May 22, 2020

Naghmeh Sohrabi publishes in

May 19, 2020

The Berlin Prize provides recipients with the time and resources to step back from their daily obligations to engage in academic and artistic projects they might otherwise not pursue. During her semester-long fellowship at the Academy in spring 2021, Sohrabi will reconstruct the intimate lives that were folded into the vastness of the 1979 Iranian revolution. 

May 18, 2020

María Ignacia Rodríguez de Velasco (1778-1850) is a fascinating Mexican woman who has become an icon of the nation’s popular culture. Over time the stories told about her have grown increasingly fanciful. Known by her nickname, “La Güera Rodríguez,” she has been – erroneously – portrayed as a courtesan who seduced Simón Bolívar, Alexander von Humboldt, and Agustín de Iturbide; as a major independence heroine; and as a feminist who defied the conventions of her day. La Güera Rodríguez: The Woman and the Legend reconstructs her biography and then traces the way she has been remembered in historical chronicles and in the press, novels, plays, comic books, movies, an opera, television programs, and blogs. Showing when and why false facts and apocryphal stories appeared, the book not only illuminates the neglected social history of her day but also highlights the degree to which historical memory reflects ever-changing worldviews and concerns.  

May 5, 2020

Paul Jankowski discusses his new book, All Against All: The Long Winter of 1933 and the Origins of the Second World War, in BrandeisNow.

May 5, 2020

The victory over smallpox shows the beginning of more modern public health and can teach us about today’s COVID-19 pandemic, Michael Willrich argues in

May 1, 2020

Zachary Matusheski is a lecturer in the history department at The Ohio State University.  He specializes in late 19th and 20th century U.S. diplomatic and military history and is currently working on a book project about the ways East Asian crises shaped Dwight D. Eisenhower’s foreign policy reforms.

April 28, 2020

As he weaves together the stories of the influences that conspired to lead the world to war, Jankowski offers a cautionary tale relevant for western democracies today. The rising threat from dictatorial regimes and the ideological challenge presented by communism and fascism gave the 1930s a unique face, just as global environmental and demographic crises are coloring our own. While we do not know for certain where these crises will take us, we do know that those of the 1930s culminated in the Second World War.

From The Kirkus Reviews, "Expert....[Jankowski] shrewdly juxtaposes interminable peace and disarmament conferences and political events with the national mood in a dozen countries whose leaders revealed a distressing eagerness to discover the source of their misery in rival nations or undeserving minorities." 

April 17, 2020

Professor Muigai received this prestigious award for her current book project,  Infant Death and the Black Experience.  Given annually by the American Association for the History of Medicine to an early-career scholar, the Pressman-Burroughs Wellcome award recognizes a book project that stands to make a significant impact in medical and health history.  Members of the award committee state, "we believe that when published, Infant Death and the Black Experience will make a dramatic mark on our field, helping us to rethink race, gender, and public health in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries."

April 9, 2020

American Council of Learned Societies (ACLS) fellowships and grants are awarded to individual scholars for excellence in research in the humanities and related social sciences. Professor Sohrabi will spend her fellowship year working on her current book project, The Intimate Lives of a Revolution: Iran 1979.

March 13, 2020

In support of public health efforts and for the safety of our community, Brandeis has determined that all classes should be moved online for the spring semester.  Additionally, all on-campus events have been canceled for the remainder of the academic year. You may read all messages to the Brandeis community and access the frequently asked questions page by clicking on the headline above.

February 14, 2020

Research by historian Abigail Cooper shows how newly emancipated people forged a new path.

December 18, 2019

In this episode of the Highlights Podcast, Alexander Herbert, a PhD candidate in the history department, discusses his book, What About Tomorrow?: An Oral History of Russian Punk from the Soviet Era to Pussy Riot.

October 28, 2019

Patrick Brown defended his dissertation this September and will receive his PhD in February 2020.

PhD Candidate Cassandra Berman Awarded 2019 Merrill Travel Grant from Organization of American Historians

April 9, 2019

The Organization of American Historians (OAH) has awarded Cassandra Berman a 2019 Samuel and Marion Merrill Graduate Student Travel Grant. The grants are supported by a bequest from the Merrill Trust and help sponsor the travel-related costs of graduate students who are confirmed as participants on the OAH conference program.  Cassandra’s dissertation examines the figure of the transgressive mother in American print culture from the 1760s to the 1860s, focusing on women who were either unwilling or unable to live up to the demands of white, Christian maternity. At the 2019 OAH Annual Meeting, Cassandra presented a portion of this research on the panel she organized, “Negotiating Freedom, Slavery, and Womanhood in Popular Print.”

Gregory Freeze has just published a large volume in Russia, Gubitel’noe blatochestie: Rossiiskaia tserkov’ i padenie imperii [Subversive Piety: The Russian Church and the Fall of the Empire]

December 21, 2018

This volume was published by the Evropeiskii universitet in St. Petersburg. It consists of eight chapters, all based on extensive archival research; the main theme is that the Orthodox Church (and especially common believers) were not a mainstay of the old regime, but a key factor in its demise.

March 15, 2018