News from the Chair, Dr. Jasamin Rostam-Kolayi:
Welcome to the History Department’s inaugural online newsletter!
We have much to be thankful for this spring. Among our 400 History majors--an upswing from the past few years--we are graduating 140 students with Bachelor’s degrees. Our Master’s in History Program is also prospering with a hundred or more graduate students. And applications for the Fall semester keep coming in! We continue to support our students with History scholarships and fellowships, expanding the number of awards we granted this year with the addition of the Black Family Fellowship, which has funded student research and travel to archives, conferences, and study abroad. History undergrad Jacob Vela, whose story is featured below, could not have conducted archival-based research at Arizona State and Yale University without such generous support. Our faculty teach, mentor, publish, and provide students hands-on experiences that make history relevant and meaningful, as detailed in the feature below on the Cal State D.C. Scholars Program led by Dr. Volker Janssen and the “Be a Lincoln!” event organized by Dr. Aitana Guia’s Spanish Civil War class. And some of us, like Dr. Ben Cawthra, even podcast! Our alumni continue to inspire as they embark on careers in law, education, and public policy. As Commencement 2019 approaches, we celebrate another year of extraordinary achievements in the History Department.
Selection of Recent Faculty Publications:
- Kate Burlingham, “Praying for Justice: The World Council of Churches and the Program to Combat Racism” Journal of Cold War Studies, Vol. 21, No. 1, Winter 2019, pp 1- 31.
- Lisa Tran, “From Toleration to Prosecution: Concubinage and the Law in China.” In Julia Moses, ed., Marriage, Law and Modernity: Global Histories. London: Bloomsbury Academic, 2018, pp. 54-70.
- Stephen Neufeld, “Mexico's First Decades of Independence,” coauthored with Christon Archer. In The Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Latin American History. Ed. William Beezley. New York: Oxford University Press, 2018.
- Benjamin Cawthra, “Yesternow: Jack Johnson, Documentary Film, and the Politics of Jazz.” In Gerald Early, ed., The Cambridge Companion to Boxing. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2019, 279-88.
- ___, Federal Art Project: American Design. Orange County Great Park Gallery, December 2, 2018-February 10, 2019.
- Jasamin Rostam-Kolayi, “The New Frontier Meets the White Revolution: The Peace Corps in Iran, 1962-1976,” Iranian Studies, 51:4 (May 2018): 587-612, DOI: 10.1080/00210862.2018.1464386
- ___, “‘Beautiful Americans’: Peace Corps Iran in the Global Sixties” in Revisiting 1968 and the Global Sixties, eds. Chen Jian, Martin Klimke, et. al., Routledge, 2018.
- Aitana Guia, “Nativism, Gendered Islamophobia and Muslim Activism in Spanish North Africa.” In North Africa and the Making of Europe: Governance, Institutions and Culture, edited by Muriam Haleh Davis and Thomas Serres, 133-154. London: Bloomsbury Academic Publishing, 2018.
- ___, “Political Muslim Women: Embracing Citizenship and Feminism in Democratic Spain.” In Observing Islam in Spain, edited by Ana I. Planet and Angeles Ramirez, 158-180. Leiden: Brill, 2018.
- ___, “Ni tan lejos, ni tan cerca. Las migraciones en la España contemporánea.” In Nueva historia de la España Contemporánea (1808-2018), edited by José Álvarez Junco and Adrian Shubert, 489-517. Madrid: Galaxia Gutenberg, 2018.
- ___, “Emmurallem-nos! Una onada nativista amenaça les democràcies liberals multiculturals” (¡Let’s Build a Wall! A Nativist Wave Threatens Liberal Multicultural Democracies). L’Espill 59 (Fall 2018- Winter 2019).
Gelane Diamond, BA '18
While at CSUF, I majored in history and minored in political science. CSUF provided great opportunities for interdisciplinary study and professional development. I participated in Model UN and Moot Court. I also studied for a semester in Washington, D.C. with the Cal State D.C. Scholars Program, where I interned at the State Department. My time in the history department was both challenging and rewarding. I thoroughly enjoyed the learning and research, and even had my paper published in the Welebaethan. As a member of the Honors Program, I had the opportunity to work with one of my history professors for a year on my senior thesis. It was a rewarding experience to research, write, and receive helpful guidance and feedback from my mentor. Upon graduating from CSUF, I moved to Arlington, Virginia to attend law school at George Mason University’s Antonin Scalia Law School. I will graduate from Scalia Law in May 2021. I firmly believe my time balancing my studies and extracurricular activities at CSUF prepared me for the rigor of law school. This summer, I will be interning at the New Civil Liberties Alliance, a public interest law firm specializing in administrative law, in Washington, D.C. Ultimately, my experience at CSUF was incredibly rewarding. I am so grateful for both the opportunities CSUF provided for me and the faculty, who truly cared and invested in my education.
Joey Low, MA '18
After graduating from CSUF with a history MA, I transitioned to a history PhD program at Brandeis University in Boston. So far, the experience has been excellent. The graduate students here are all very helpful and welcoming. We build a surprisingly nice community in the history department, and I enjoy the events the department hold from time to time such as workshops, guest speakers and dinners. As of right now, I’m finishing coursework, language training, source gathering, and I begin TA’ing and preparing for comprehensive exams next year. One of the negative aspects of living in Boston is probably the weather. Compared to California, Boston has much more snow, rain, and wind, all of which can appear quite randomly at times. But that is the price of living near such an amazing academic atmosphere in the northeast region. The Boston area has many great schools such as Tufts, BC, BU, MIT, and Harvard, and Brandeis students can take classes at any of these institutions for credit. Last Fall, I took a graduate seminar on late Imperial China at Harvard under the direction of two of the most renown historians in the field, Michael Szonyi and Mark Elliott. This experience probably marked the height of my career, even though I felt unworthy being in the presence of other Harvard people sometimes, as I’m not from Harvard. Regardless, I learned much about Chinese history and made some important connections there. Despite my successes so far, I still have a long and difficult road ahead of me, and I look forward to the challenge.
Katie Calhoun, BA '17
Since graduation, I entered into the Master of Arts in Global Governance, Politics, and Security program at American University's School of International Service in Washington D.C. I am interning at Democracy International and serve as an event coordinator for the Global Politics Student Association. I am constantly in awe here in the capital. Not only is it the heart of American politics and history, but the epicenter of U.S.-foreign relations as well. I am working my way toward a career in international affairs and as I make my way, I've been searching for good Mexican and Chinese food, making new friends, taking photographs, and painting. Alas, nothing can compare to the food and weather of Southern California, therefore I am advocating to move the U.S. capital to San Diego. #MoveDCtoSD
Jennifer Keil, MA '14
As a full-time digital historian, I opened my business called 70 Degrees in order to help institutions build and provide public access to their archives. Part of my portfolio is digitizing records for the Moulton Family Foundation which represents the former Rancho Niguel. This OC ranch was nearly 22,000 acres owned by Lewis F. Moulton. The CSUF practicum coursework taught me to write interpretive plans, archive collections, curate exhibitions, and review historic site nominations such as the Aliso Viejo Ranch project. I am also collaborating with UCI Chicano Studies professors and the Korean Consulate of Los Angeles to curate their communities’ history.
During my graduate studies at CSUF, I had the amazing opportunity to receive training from the Lawrence de Graaf Center for Oral and Public History and received an award from the namesake. I became passionate about preserving the spoken word and was invited to present my research at an Oral History Association conference with my colleagues. In 2015 I joined the Southwest Oral History Association board. In 2016, we held a joint conference with OHA to commemorate their 50th anniversary and our 35th anniversary. I was asked to be a part of the local arrangements committee. I became SOHA’s 1st VP and had the opportunity to chair the 2018 conference in Fullerton in partnership with COPH. Dr. Granata, my master project mentor, and I had the opportunity to plan this event together. As SOHA is preparing for it’s joint #SOHAatOHA2019 conference in Salt Lake City, I am reflecting on my journey to being nominated organization president. I am working with OHA President, Dr. Natalie Fousekis and her team to make this conference successful. We hope you will join us October 16-19th, 2019.
I encourage you to join Phi Alpha Theta to expand your network. Also, take courses in business and museum studies in order to expand your CV skill sets. You can volunteer to help organize lectures, symposiums, and events such as the upcoming 50th anniversary for COPH. I did this during my studies which connected me to consulates and folklore specialists. I know that this experience in public history is just beginning and I can’t wait to collaborate with you as you enter the exciting field of history!
Rayann Treganza, BA '17
Since graduating from CSUF in 2017, I moved back home and started a teaching career of my own. I’m in my first year of teaching 12th grade civics and economics at Porterville High School. Teaching civics at such a crucial point in our history has been the most rewarding thing I’ve been able to do with my life thus far. A friend of mine who works with NextGen California came to my class in October to talk to my students about voting, the importance of voting, and registering to vote. Together we registered (and pre-registered those still 17)over 100 new voters! Some were eligible to vote in last year’s midterm election and all will be eligible to vote in 2020.
When I went to college, I did not think I would end up teaching. But it was a series of professors I had at CSUF that made the difference for me. My hope is to make the same difference for them, that my professors did for me.
Mariea Daniell Whittington, BA '07 MA '12
Hello fellow Titans! My name is Mariea Daniell Whittington, proud CSUF almuna of the History department. In 2012, I graduated with an emphasis in medieval studies (ablativus absolutus to my Latinistas and Dr. Burgtorf!). Realizing I wanted to compliment my masters degree in History, I went on to receive my other masters in Library and Information Science in 2014. Since then, I’ve travelled all over the world, and some notable places include: South Africa, Istanbul, Ireland, Japan, Iceland, and most recently Malaysia! I’ve also opened two primary school libraries in South Africa and Malaysia with the help of my Church. Currently, I am the Assistant Library Director and Electronic Resources Librarian at Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena. You can find me at the Renaissance Faire in Irwindale (where else do medievalists go to have fun?) and CSUF History events as one of the elderly alumni. May all of you reading this enjoy your time at CSUF and in the History department! You’ll make lifelong friends and realize that time flies by too fast when you’re having fun, like formatting footnotes (all hail Lady Turabian!).
“Be a Lincoln”: The Making of High Impact Practices in History
Dr. Aitana Guia
Assistant Professor of History
Update by Justin Zbierski, History Major, BA '19
Over the course of the Spring 2019 semester, students in Dr. Aitana Guia’s Spanish Civil War class (HIST435C) have contributed to the study of history as active participants in the field. Lectures were few and far between as students directed their own conversations about all aspects of the civil war including international politics, personal accounts of the war, and the development of culture and art surrounding the events of 1936 - 1939.
After reviewing Adam Hochschild’s award winning book Spain in Our Hearts, the students of HIST435C had the opportunity to meet with the famed author, journalist, and lecturer to discuss his approach to the Spanish Civil War. No stone was left unturned as the students of CSU Fullerton’s history department investigated Mr. Hochschild’s research methods and motivations for writing such an all-encompassing book about the young American volunteers in Spain. This experience left many students with the feeling that they had engaged in a conversation as fellow researchers themselves, sharing knowledge between colleagues.
The Spring semester culminated in the “Be A Lincoln!” symposium, where students from HIST435C temporarily turned the lecture hall next to the CSU Fullerton archives into a 1936 meeting of the Abraham Lincoln Brigade. Over one hundred CSU participants listened to and performed first-hand accounts of the Lincoln Brigade volunteers including Dr. Rostam-Kolayi (CSUF History Chair), Dr. Chris Brown (President of the California Faculty Association), Bobbie Porter (CSUF Assistant Vice President of Diversity, Inclusion & Equity) as well as a special appearance and reading from Francisco Javier Vallaure de Acha (Consul General of Spain in Los Angeles). Throughout the semester, students in HIST435 uncovered rare historical artifacts from the Cameron Stewart Collection and shared their findings at the symposium, including letters from veterans themselves, Spanish-Republican magazines, Francoist Magazines, and newsletters from the 1930s American Left.