Graduate Fields of Study - United States

The U.S. History graduate program at the University of Arizona offers students an excellent graduate experience with many opportunities to develop their research and teaching skills. The department is large enough to offer a wide variety of courses, many of which are graduate-only colloquia and seminars, and small enough to offer the individual attention that students need. Some students gain valuable experience as teaching assistants and more advanced students also have opportunities to teach their own courses during the winter and summer sessions. Students work with faculty who specialize in a broad spectrum of topics and employ diverse methods to explore social, cultural, and political history. Faculty fields include: environmental history; gender, sexuality, and women's history; borderlands/southwest history; the history of the North American West; the history of science, technology, and medicine; the history of capitalism and political economy; Native American history; and Mexican American history. U.S. faculty members often collaborate with, and the U.S. graduate curriculum draws broad instructional and research support from, other faculty members in the Department of History and other units in the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences and the University of Arizona. For example, the U.S. faculty’s offerings in borderlands/southwest history and Mexican American history benefit from the History Department’s emphasis on Latin American history. Similarly, our course of study in U.S. women’s history contributes to the History Department’s program in Comparative Women’s History and also draws upon the College’s Gender & Women’s Studies Department. Graduate students interested in environmental history regularly engage with the Institute of the Environment, while early Americanists often participate in the Group for Early Modern Studies

Resources for students:

The Department of History and the University offer a wealth of resources for students in the areas of research, training, and support. The University of Arizona Library collections are especially rich in materials related to U.S. History and the southwest. In addition to published books, the library has archival holdings and substantial microform holdings of documents, reprints, journals, and so on. Also available for research are the Udall Center for Studies in Public Policy on campus, the University's Photography museum archives, and the Arizona Historical Society whose rich collection of Southwestern material has already formed the basis of many books and is located just next to the University.  

Juan Garcia: twentieth century, Mexican American 
David Gibbs: twentieth-century political economy, capitalism
Katie Hemphill: nineteenth-century, South, gender, urban
Katherine Morrissey: nineteenth- and twentieth-century, West, environmental
Erika Pérez:  colonial America, nineteenth-century, West/borderlands, women
Tyina Steptoe: twentieth-century, race, gender, South
Jeremy Vetter: nineteenth- and twentieth- century, West, environmental, science and technology, capitalism


Dissertations in Progress, Recent Dissertations, and Placements 

Salvador Acosta (2010), FordhamUniversity

“Crossing Borders, Erasing Boundaries: Inter-Ethnic Marriages in Tucson, 1854-1930” 

Denise Bates (2006)

“Negotiations of Power: Tribal-State Relations in the 1970’s Deep South”

Pamela Bennett

“Sometimes Freedom Wears a Woman’s Face: Native American Women Veterans of World War II”

Marcus Burtner (2013)

“Crafting and Consuming an American Sonoran Desert: Global Visions, Regional Nature and National Meaning”

Shannon Rae Butler (2008)

"Into the Storm: American Covert Involvement in the Angolan Civil War, 1974-1975"

Stephanie Capaldo (2013)

"Smoke and Mirrors: Smelter Pollution and the Cultural Construction of Environmental Narratives in the U.S.-Mexico Borderlands, 1970-1988"

Sean Duffy (2011), San Antonio College

“Shell Game: The US-Afghan Opium Relationship”

Amy Grey (2014), Northland Pioneer College

"Educated Arguments: The Connections between Schooling and Citizenship in Turn-of-the-Century Tucson, Arizona"

Jane Haigh (2008)

“Political Power, Patronage, and Protection Rackets: Municipal Politics and Corruption in Denver 1889-1904.”

Marcus Hernandez (in progress)

"Sensing Development: Mining, Tourism, Manufacturing, and Agriculture in Colorado's Arkansas River Watershed"

Vilja Hulden (2011)

“Employers Unite! Organized Employer Reactions to the Labor Union Challenge of the Progressive Era”

Katrina Jagodinsky (2011), University of Nebraska

“Racial and Gendered Aspects of State Formation in Western Borderlands: A Comparative Study of Oregon and ArizonaTerritories”

Tai Johnson (2016)

"The Shifting Nature of Food and Water on the Hopi Indian Reservation"

Masami Kimura

“Modernity as the Ideological Nexus of the Cold War Japanese-American Alliance“ 

Chrystel Pit

“‘How Can We Turn Them into Good Citizens?’: A Comparative Study of Mexican Immigrants in Tucson, Arizona and Algerian Immigrants in Marseille, France in the Post-1960’s Era” 

Fawn-Amber Montoya (2006), ColoradoStateUniversity, Pueblo

“Mines, Massacres, and Memories: Colorado Fuel and Iron’s Creation of a Company in Southern Colorado, 1880-1919”

Clark Pomerleau (2005), University of North Texas

“Among and Between Women: Califia Community, Grassroots Feminist Education, and the Politics of Difference, 1975–87”

Neil Prendergast (2011), University of Wisconsin, Stevens-Point

“Celebrated Seasons: A Natural History of Four American Holidays”

Megan Prins (2015)

"Winters in America: Cities and Environment, 1870-1930"

Luke Ryan

“The Indians Would Be Too Near Us: Indians, Paths of Disunion in the Making of Kansas, 1848-1865”

Robin Zenger

“Race, Gender, and Citizenship in 1950’s Panama”



College of Social and Behavioral Sciences

Contact Us

Department of History
Cesar E. Chavez
Main Office, Room 415 
1110 James E. Rogers Way
Tucson, AZ 85721
Tel: (520) 621-1586
Fax: (520) 621-2422