U.S. Intellectual History Blog

Meet Our Bloggers

Benjamin Alpers

Benjamin Alpers is Reach for Excellence Associate Professor in the University of Oklahoma’s Honors College, whose faculty he joined in 1998. His primary teaching and research interests concern twentieth-century American intellectual and cultural history, with special interests in political culture and film history. Among the courses he offers in the Honors College are colloquia on World War II in history and memory and film noir, and Perspectives courses on American social thought and politics and culture in the Great Depression. Alpers is also affiliated with the History Department and the Film and Media Studies Program.  He is the author of Dictators, Democracy, and American Public Culture: Envisioning the Totalitarian Enemy, 1920s-1950s (UNC Press, 2002). 

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Eran Zelnik

Eran Zelnik earned his PhD in United States History from UC Davis in the fall of 2016. His dissertation is entitled ”The Comical Style in America: Humor, Settler Colonialism, and the Making of a White Man’s Democracy, 1740-1840.” It is a cultural history of common white men in early America, which examines how the rise to prominence of common white men and the consolidation of democratic values were predicated on subjugation and oppression for most everyone else. His research focuses on such phenomena as ‘playing Indian’ and ‘blackface minstrelsy’ as key sites for the construction of whiteness and gender in early America. Eran earned his BA at Tel Aviv University in Israel and moved to the United States in 2009 to pursue an academic career.

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Kurt Newman

Kurt Newman is a Ph.D candidate in History at UC Santa Barbara. He is working on a dissertation entitled “The Multiplication of Everything: Cultural Workers, the Law, and Pragmatist Thought in the Golden Age of Analog,” and a project on the history of popular music in the US South since the 1960s. He is a founding co-editor, with James Livingston, of Politics/Letters, a new quarterly journal and web zine. As an intellectual historian, Kurt is most interested in the question of what it might mean to properly frame the relation between the production of new knowledge and the history of capitalism. This project would seem to require meditation upon canonical political economy, the Marxist tradition, and as wide a variety of critical theories (psychoanalytic, feminist, queer, critical race-oriented, and continental-philosophical) as can be assimilated given the constraints of time and space. Thus, in his contributions here, Kurt will try to work the “Theory beat,” with an eye to what might be most useful to students an practitioners of US intellectual history.

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Andrew Hartman

Andrew Hartman is Professor of History at Illinois State University.  He is the author of two books: Education and the Cold War: The Battle for the American School (Palgrave Macmillan, 2008) and A War for the Soul Of America:  A History of the Culture Wars (University of Chicago Press, 2015). Hartman is currently at work on a third monograph, Karl Marx in America, which will also be published with the University of Chicago Press. Hartman was the Fulbright Distinguished Chair in American Studies at the University of Southern Denmark for the 2013-14 academic year, and was the founding president of S-USIH.

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Tim Lacy

Tim Lacy is Assistant Director of Graduate Research Projects in the University of Chicago’s Graham School of Continuing Liberal and Professional Studies. He earned a doctorate in U.S. history from Loyola University Chicago, with specialties in cultural and intellectual history, as well as the history of education. That work resulted in a book, The Dream of a Democratic Culture: Mortimer J. Adler and the Great Books Idea (Palgrave Macmillan, 2013). Lacy co-founded both the U.S. Intellectual History Blog and the Society for U.S. Intellectual History. Articles by him have appeared in the Journal of the History of Ideas, American Catholic Studies, The Journal of the Gilded Age and Progressive Era, U.S. Catholic Historian, and various encyclopedias. Lacy is wrapping up a manuscript on ‘great books cosmopolitanism’ and hoping to start, soon, a book project on anti-intellectualism and ignorance in post-WWII America.

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Robin Marie Averbeck

Robin Marie Averbeck has a PhD in American history from UC Davis and studies post-war liberalism. Her dissertation – “‘Want in the Midst of Plenty’: Social Science, Poverty, and the Limits of Liberalism” — and future book focuses on the contribution of liberals and some leftists to what is known as “the culture of poverty.” She argues that the post-war liberal discourse about poverty helped set the stage for the political culture of the New Right by shaping and contributing to many of its key assumptions and tendencies. Robin also contributes to a variety of blogs and public history projects.

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Raymond Haberski, Jr.

Raymond Haberski, Jr. Professor of History and Director of American Studies at IUPUI, Haberski is the author of five books, including God and War: American Civil Religion Since 1945 (Rutgers, 2012) and the forthcoming Evangelization to the Heart.  For the 2008-2009 academic year, he was the Fulbright Danish Distinguished Chair in American Studies at the Center for the Study of the Americas (CSA) at the Copenhagen Business School.  He is presently working on a book that considers Catholic thought on war and peace in American history.

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Andrew Seal

Andrew Seal is a lecturer at the University of New Hampshire. He earned his Ph.D. from Yale University in American Studies in 2017 and is currently at work on his first monograph, The Common Man: The Political Economy of Knowledge Work in the United States, 1880-1970. He is also active in the Midwestern History Association, and is a co-editor of the forthcoming Mapping Midwestern Minds: Essays on the Intellectual History of the Midwest. His writing has appeared or is forthcoming in Dissentn+1, the Journal of American Studies, the Los Angeles Review of Books, the Chronicle of Higher Education Review, the Middle West Review, and the Journal of Politics, Religion, and Ideology.

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L.D. Burnett

L.D. Burnett received her PhD in Humanities (History of Ideas) from the University of Texas at Dallas (2015), where she is currently employed as the 2017-2018 Teaching Fellow in History. Her book, Canon Wars: The 1980s Western Civ Debates at Stanford and the Triumph of Neoliberalism in Higher Education, is under contract with University of North Carolina Press.

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Robert Green II

Robert Green II is a second year graduate student in the doctoral program at the University of South Carolina. He received his Bachelor of Arts degree at Georgia Southern University in 2008 in Creative Writing, and a Masters of Arts in History in 2012. Currently, his research interests are African American intellectual history in the 20th century, political history, and the United States after 1965.

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Sara Georgini

Sara Georgini earned her Ph.D. in History from Boston University in 2016. She is Series Editor for The Papers of John Adams, part of The Adams Papers project at the Massachusetts Historical Society. She has worked on the selection, annotation, indexing, and book production of nearly a dozen scholarly editions drawn from the Adams Papers (Harvard University Press, 2009— ). Her research focuses on early American thought, culture, and religion. Her current book project is “Household Gods: Creating Adams Family Religion in the American Republic, 1583-1927.” She is a co-founder and contributor to The Junto. She writes about American history, thought, and culture for Smithsonian and CNN.

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Peter Kuryla

Peter Kuryla is associate professor of history at Belmont University in Nashville, Tennessee. He teaches a variety of courses there having to do with the intellectual and cultural history of the United States. He’s interested in the intersections between literature, historical thinking, philosophy and political thought. His published articles reflect these interests, as does his book manuscript currently in the works, “The Imagined Civil Rights Movement and the Art of Memory.”

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Holly Genovese

Holly Genovese is a Ph.D student in history and gender and sexuality studies at Temple University. She received her B.A. in history and political science from Temple in 2013 and her M.A in history at the University of South Carolina in 2015. Her dissertation project focuses on prisoner rights organizing in New Orleans from the early 20th century through Katrina. She is contributing editor at Auntiebellum Magazine and has written for The Establishment, Scalawag Magazine, and Auntiebellum. Her interests include the Civil Rights Movement and Black Power, African American intellectual history, carceral studies and public history.

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