We are delighted to welcome Anasa Hicks as our new Caribbean specialist. Hicks will receive her Ph.D. this summer from New York University. Her research focuses on Cuba with a Caribbean wide analytic lens. Based on extensive and original archival work in Havana and Santiago, Cuba, her dissertation (entitled "Hierarchies at Home") interrogates the ways that employers perceived domestic workers from the abolition of slavery in the late 1880s to the time before the 1959 Revolution. The work bridges a critical period in Cuban history and it complicates the historical understanding of the roles of home workers within systems of patriarchy and race. Her work has already received significant recognition, she was a 2014-2015 Ford Foundation Dissertation Fellow. Hicks has also received prestigious awards from the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation as well as support to undertake research at the Cuban Heritage Collection at the University of Miami. Prior to her graduate work at NYU, she earned her BA with Honors from UNC-Chapel Hill in 2011. In the fall semester of 2017, Professor Hicks will teach History of the Caribbean (LAH 4470) and Social Revolutionary Movements in Latin America (LAH 4748).

Dr. Ben Dodds, a scholar with diverse interests and an accomplished educator, joins the FSU history department in fall 2017, after many years at Durham University. Dodds is by training a historian of late medieval England, whose work has focused on social and economic history, particularly of the peasantry. In his book, Peasants and Production in the Medieval North-East: The Evidence from Tithes, 1270-1536 (2007), Dodds analyzed revelatory evidence in previously underappreciated sources, revealing peasants to have been savvy economic actors. Research on Robin Hood and banditry more generally then led Dodds to an entirely different area of inquiry, the bandit literature of Spain in the early modern and modern periods. A book on this topic is currently in preparation. Meanwhile, Dodds remains a committed medievalist, with ongoing research related to the impact of the Black Death in late medieval England.

On March 23 at 5pm at the Rendina Room, FSU Alumni Center, David Blight will deliver the Department of History's 4th annual James P. Jones Lecture. Blight is Class of 1954 Professor of American History and Director of the Gilder Lehrman Center for the Study of Slavery, Resistance, and Abolition at Yale University. His books include annotated editions, with introductory essay, of Frederick Douglass’s second autobiography, My Bondage and My Freedom, Robert Penn Warren’s Who Speaks for the Negro, and the monograph, American Oracle: The Civil War in the Civil Rights Era. Blight is also the author of A Slave No More: Two Men Who Escaped to Freedom, Including their Narratives of Emancipation. Professor Blight's lecture is entitled "Writing Frederick Douglass's Life: Why and Why Now?"

Graduate students in HIS 6087: Exhibiting History created an exhibition: “All Ends are Beginnings: The Transformation of FSCW to FSU, 1930s to 1960s,” which will be on display at Strozier Library through much of the Spring semester.  Before Florida State University was the large state university that we know today, it was the Florida State College for Women (FSCW). This exhibit explores the transformation of FSCW to FSU from the 1930s through 1965, especially the time surrounding World War II. By highlighting the university as a women’s liberal arts college in the 1930s, a co-educational school in the 1940s and 1950s, and the beginning of racial integration in the 1960s, the exhibit guides you through this transitional period. The exhibit features contemporary photographs of the school and students from the era alongside artifacts from Florida State’s Special Collections and Archives and the Institute on World War II and the Human Experience. The exhibit examines the changes as well as the continuity of the university through an era of great transformation.

On May 20, FSU alumna Tameka Bradley Hobbs was awarded the Florida Historical Society’s Harry and Harriette Moore prize for her book, Democracy Abroad, Lynching at Home: Racial Violence in Florida (University of Florida Press: 2015).  The award is named in honor of the late Harry and Harriette Moore, who were murdered in 1951 because of their civil rights and voter registration efforts throughout Florida. This category recognizes an outstanding book or monograph relating to Florida's ethnic groups, or dealing with a significant social issue from a historical perspective.


The Department of History's 3rd Annual James P. Jones Lecture which will be given on April 21st at 5pm at the Rendina Room, FSU Alumni Center. This year's lecturer will be Jane Kamensky, Professor of History and Pforzheimer Director of the Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America at Harvard University.

Professor Maxine Jones was honored last week by Three Rivers Legal Services and Southern Legal Counsel for her work as principal investigator for the Rosewood Academic Study. In a week-long 1923 rampage, whites murdered eight black residents of Rosewood, Florida, burning the town to the ground, following a false accusation against a black man by a white woman. The Florida Legislature commissioned Prof. Jones' study, which led to reparations for Rosewood victims in 1994.

Professor Alexander Aviña's Specters of Revolution: Peasant Guerrillas in the Cold War Mexican Countryside (Oxford University Press 2014) has been awarded the Maria Elena Martinez Mexican History Book Prize by the Conference on Latin American History. The prize is awarded annually for the book or article judged to be the most significant work on the history of Mexico published during the previous year. Congratulations, Alex!

Dr. Richard Bartlett, historian of the American West and professor of history at FSU for more than three decades, passed away in Knoxville last month. His obituary lists five books published before retirement, and five books written after retirement. Prof. Ed Wynot notes that "Dick was one of the nicest persons you could ever hope to meet, let alone work alongside. He didn't have a mean bone in his body, and was especially helpful to new faculty starting their academic careers." The department offers its condolences to his family, students, and friends.

The Institute on World War II and the Human Experience is holding a conference on Comparative Home Fronts on January 14-16, 2016 at the Hotel Duval. Sheldon Garon (Princeton) will be the keynote speaker; consult the conference schedule for the full program. The conference is free and open to the public, but please register at