Lynn Thomas: Areas of Graduate Study

For more on Dr. Thomas's publications, scholarly interests and contact information, please see her faculty page.

Division: Africa & the Middle East

Examines methodological and conceptual issues in the study of sub-Saharan Africa since 1500 focusing on pre-colonial political and social institutions, slavery and the slave trade, European colonialism, anti-colonial resistance and nationalist politics, and postcolonial challenges. Emphasis on exploring the usefulness of gender, sexuality, race, ethnicity, and class as analytical categories in African history.

Division: Comparative History (Comparative Gender & Comparative Colonialisms)*

The field in Comparative Gender explores historical scholarship on gender, focusing on 19th- and 20th-century Africa and another period and place of the student's choice, by examining the emergence of women's history; the relationship between Marxism, feminism, and poststructuralism; the framing of gender as a social and symbolic construct; and the analytical intersections between gender, race, sexuality, and class. The field in Comparative Colonialisms approaches European colonialism in Africa and Asia during the 19th and 20th centuries by examining scholarship on the relationship between capitalism and colonialism, violence and the routinization of colonial power, colonial categories of race, ethnicity, class, sexuality, and gender, and resistance movements and nationalist politics.

*Students may not offer a field in the Comparative History division as a first field.




Spring 2015

HSTRY 572: Dissertation Prospectus Workshop

This course will help graduate students to develop step-by-step a dissertation prospectus that can then be used to fulfill the department prospectus requirement and to apply for research and fellowship support. We will focus on crafting prospectuses that are clear and engaging to scholars in one’s specific field as well as far beyond. We will meet on a regular (though not quite weekly) basis to discuss the prospectus-writing process, and to share and workshop drafts.  Students will also be expected to solicit feedback on drafts from their chairs and other committee members. Credit/no-credit only.