Ben Nobbs-Thiessen (PhD, 16) Publishes ‘Landscapes of Migration’ with UNC Press

Congratulations to PhD alumnus Ben Nobbs-Thiessen on the publication of his first monograph – Landscapes of Migration: Mobility and Environmental Change on Bolivia’s Tropical Frontier, 1952 to the Present – with UNC Press. Nobbs-Thiessen is currently a postdoctoral fellow at Washington State University. Dr. Jeffrey Lesser advised Nobbs-Thiessen’s 2016 dissertation, “The Cultivated State, Migrants and the Transformation of the Bolivian Lowlands, 1952-2000.” Read a blurb about the book below and see more on the UNC Press website.

In the wake of a 1952 revolution, leaders of Bolivia’s National Revolutionary Movement (MNR) embarked on a program of internal colonization known as the “March to the East.” In an impoverished country dependent on highland mining, the MNR sought to convert the nation’s vast “undeveloped” Amazonian frontier into farmland, hoping to achieve food security, territorial integrity, and demographic balance. To do so, they encouraged hundreds of thousands of Indigenous Bolivians to relocate from the “overcrowded” Andes to the tropical lowlands, but also welcomed surprising transnational migrant streams, including horse-and-buggy Mennonites from Mexico and displaced Okinawans from across the Pacific.

Alumni Update: Hyeok Hweon “H.H.” Kang (13C)

Following his graduation from Emory in 2013, former History major Hyeok Hweon “H.H.” Kang went to Harvard for graduate school in Korean and East Asian History. Kang is currently putting the finishing touches on his dissertation, “Crafting Knowledge: Artisan, Officer, and the Culture of Making in Late Chosŏn Korea, 1592–1910.” Starting in the fall, he will be a D. Kim Foundation for History of Science and Technology Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of the History of Science and Technology at Johns Hopkins University. After his postdoc, Kang will join the Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures at Washington University in St. Louis as an assistant professor. Congratulations, H.H.!

Ashley Parcells (PhD, ’18) Receives NEH Summer Stipend

Dr. Ashley Parcells, Assistant Professor of History at Jacksonville State University, has received a Summer Stipend from the National Endowment for the Humanities. The support will allow Parcells to complete interviews and two chapters for a book on apartheid and sovereignty in KwaZulu, South Africa. Her project is titled “Ethnicity, State-Building, and the Making of Apartheid, ca. 1951 to 1994.” Parcells completed her doctorate in 2018, with Dr. Clifton Crais, Professor and Director of the Institute of African Studies, serving as her primary dissertation adviser.


Phi Beta Kappa Society of Georgia Recognizes Eckert and Suh for Teaching Excellence


The Gamma Chapter of Georgia of the Phi Beta Kappa Society has recognized two Emory History Department faculty members for teaching excellence: Dr. Astrid M. Eckert, Associate Professor, and Dr. Chris Suh, Assistant Professor. Eckert is a historian of modern Europe and modern Germany, with teaching interests that cover German and European history in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. A few of her recent courses include “Borderlands in History,” “Modern Germany,” and “Nazi Medicine and Biology.” Suh, who joined the faculty last fall, is a historian of race, ethnicity, and inequality, specializing in the United States’ engagement with the Pacific World and Asian migration to the United States. His courses at Emory thus far have included “Transpacific Lives,” “Sounds of the Century,” and “Asian American History.”

Tom Chaffin (PhD, ’95) Captures Friendship Between Jefferson and Lafayette in ‘Revolutionary Brothers’

Congratulations to Tom Chaffin (PhD, ’95) on the publication of his new book, Revolutionary Brothers: Thomas Jefferson, the Marquis de Lafayette, and the Friendship that Helped Forge Two Nations (St. Martin’s Press, 2019). Steeped in primary sources, Revolutionary Brothers casts fresh light on the remarkable, often complicated, friendship between Jefferson and Lafayette. The Wall Street Journal describes Chaffin’s book as “A gripping narrative that offers a revelatory perspective on the combined origins of two nations . . . compelling drama and instructive history.” Read more about Chaffin’s work on his website.

Rachel Shapiro (MA and MPH, ’18) Co-Authors Article for ‘Maternal and Child Health Journal’

Rachel Shapiro, who received both an MA in history and MPH degree at Emory in 2018, has published an article in  Maternal and Child Health Journal that developed out of her graduate studies. Titled “Comparison of Women from Georgia and Contiguous States Who Obtained Abortions in Georgia, 1994–2016,” the piece examines aggregate, vital statistics data in order to analyze abortion and demographic trends for Georgia and contiguous state residents (Alabama, Florida, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee) obtaining abortion services in Georgia between 1994-2016. Shapiro co-authored the article with Blake Erhardt-Ohren (MPH, ’18) and Roger Rochat, Professor of Global Health and Epidemiology, Emory University Rollins School of Public Health.

Emory History Faculty, Graduate Students, and Alumni at #AHA2020

Faculty, students, and alumni from the Emory History Department were well represented at this year’s American Historical Association meeting in New York City. Scroll through the images below for a glimpse at some of the Emory historians at the AHA.


Dr. Thomas Rogers (2nd from right) opened the late-breaking session “Land Use and Climate Change—Historical Perspectives from Seven Continents”


Prof. Adriana Chira (right) was honored with the Paul Vanderwood Prize of 2019, awarded by the Conference of Latin American History for the best English-language article on Latin American history published in a journal other than the Hispanic American Historical Review and the Americas. Prof. Chira is pictured here with Prof. Yanna Yannakakis.


Prof. Carl Suddler visiting his book ‘Presumed Criminal’ at the NYU Press booth.


Dr. Joe Crespino on his way to a Saturday morning panel.


Emma C. Meyer and Rebekah Ramsay were part of the panel “Forging Citizenship after Empire: Reflections from Asia and the Middle East in the 20th Century”


Andrew G. Britt (PhD 2018, now at University of North Carolina School of the Arts) and Danielle L. Wiggins (PhD 2018, now at Caltech) presented on the panel “Planning, Difference, and Dislocation in the Black Americas: Atlanta, Port-au-Prince, and Sao Paulo”


Julia Lopez Fuentes presented her paper “Conflict and Fragmentation within the Europeanist Opposition to the Franco Regime, 1962-68” as part of the panel “Tolerating Totalitarianism: Why did the Franco Dictatorship survive?”

Daniel B. Domingues da Silva (PhD ’11), Molly McCullers (PhD, ’13), and Sean Andrew Wempe (PhD, ’15) Contribute to December Issue of ‘The American Historical Review’

Emory University PhD alumni are well represented in the December issue of The American Historical Review (AHR). Two alumni contribute to the reflections on “One Hundred Years of Mandates.” Molly McCullers (PhD, ’13) addresses the mandate system in South Africa in her article, “Betwixt and Between Colony and Nation-State: Liminality, Decolonization, and the South West Africa Mandate.” Sean Andrew Wempe (PhD, ’15) points out in which ways the mandate system preserved empires through his article, “A League to Preserve Empires: Understanding the Mandates System and Avenues for Further Scholarly Inquiry.” In the Museum Review section, Daniel B. Domingues da Silva (PhD, ’11) authored a piece on the “Museu do Aljube Resistência e Liberdade, Lisbon, Portugal.”

Elizabeth Stice (PhD, 2012) Describes Assigning One Text for the Entire Semester in “Inside Higher Ed”

Dr. Elizabeth Stice, a 2012 PhD alumna and Associate Professor at Palm Beach Atlantic University, recently authored an article in Inside Higher Ed on taking a different approach to assigned readings in her courses. In a humanities course that typically covers from 1700 through the present, Stice opted to use only one text for the entire semester: Tolstoy’s Anna KareninaRead about the mostly positive results of the experiment in Stice’s Inside Higher Ed article: “When Less Is More in the Classroom.” Stice completed her dissertation, “Empire Between the Lines: Constructions of Empire in British and French Trench Newspapers of the Great War,” under the advisement of Associate Professor of History Kathryn E. Amdur.

Samantha Perlman (17C) Wins City Council Election in Massachusetts

Former History major and 2017 alumna Samantha Perlman was recently elected to the city council of Marlborough, MA. Perlman is the youngest woman elected to Marlborough’s city council, and in the election earlier this month she received more votes than any other candidate. Perlman completed a double major in History and African-American Studies at Emory. Read more about the recent election: “After Dogged Campaign, Perlman Is Marlborough’s Biggest Winner.”