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History Department at Lehman College

News and Announcements

New Faculty: Rhiannon Dowling

Rhiannon DowlingThe History Department is pleased to welcome Rhiannon Dowling, who will start teaching this fall as an Assistant Professor of Modern European History. Prof. Dowling received her Ph.D from the University of California at Berkeley and since then has held prestigious postdoctoral fellowships at Harvard's Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies and Columbia's Harriman Institute for Russian, Eurasian and East European Studies. She is presently completing a book, The Soviet War on Crime, which explores how ordinary Soviet citizens, in the course of fighting crime at the behest of the state, came to agitate against corruption and inequality. Based on a treasure-trove of archival evidence, her work promises to transform our understanding of the changing social and political landscape of the USSR during its final decades. Prof. Dowling is also active in prison education: she helped found the Louisiana Prison Education Coalition in 2015, and before that taught at San Quentin while working on her Ph.D.

New Faculty: Benjamin Holtzman

Benjamin HoltzmanThe History Department is pleased to welcome Benjamin Holtzman, who will start teaching this fall as an Assistant Professor of Modern American History. Prof. Holtzman received his Ph.D from Brown University and since then has taught at Brown and Duke University. This spring he is in his final year of a two-year postdoctoral fellowship at the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in Cambridge, MA. He has just published a book with Oxford University Press, The Long Crisis: New York and the Path to Neoliberalism, which traces the efforts of neighborhood associations and activists to adjust to the city's budget shortfalls during the 1960s and 1970s by forging partnerships with the private sector. He argues that this response became the "new normal" around the country, as politicians reshaped the social contract in urban America. Prof. Holtzman has also blogged and written extensively on housing and homelessness in New York.

Cindy Lobel Scholarship in History

Cindy Lobel Scholarship in HistoryThe Lehman College History Department is pleased to announce the 2021 winners of the Cindy Lobel Scholarship in History, which was established in 2019 to recognize and reward outstanding BA and MA candidates in the department. We thank Peter Kafka and Cindy's many friends, family members, and colleagues who have made the Cindy Lobel Endowment in History possible. This year, one undergraduate and one graduate student have received the scholarship to assist in their studies during the fall semester. Sharis Ingram, who lives and works in the Bronx, is a History major and member of the Adult Degree Program. Paul Gonzalez, who earned his BA from the Lehman History Department in 2019, expects to complete his MA in History next year. Paul is a Social Insurance Specialist at the Social Security Administration's East Bronx office. For his capstone, he hopes to research the history of employment patterns and recruitment practices by the US federal goverment. The History Department is very proud of the two of you!

Fulbright Fellowship: William Wooldridge

William WooldridgeWilliam Wooldridge has received Fulbrightl fellowship to spend Spring 2021 at the Center for Chinese Studies at the National Central Library, Taipei, Taiwan.Prof. Wooldridge, who teaches Asian history in the History Department at Lehman,is working on a new book project on religious practices of maintenance and repair in Taiwanese Buddhist temples at the turn of the twentieth century. Click here to see an article about his exciting research.




ACLS/Mellon Fellowship: Robyn Spencer

Robyn SpencerRobyn Spencer has received a Frederick Burkhardt residential fellowship, which is awarded to recently-tenured scholars by the American Council of Learned Societies and supported by the Andrew Mellon Foundation. She will spend the 2020-21 academic year at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, New Jersey. Prof. Spencer is the author of The Revolution has Come: Black Power, Gender, and the Black Panther Party in Oakland (Duke University Press, 2016) and will be using her fellowship to research the global context for Black Liberation in the 1960s.


Past News

Cindy Lobel, an Associate Professor in the History Department, surrounded by her family, passed away at the Sloan Kettering Hospital on October 2, 2018, due to complications from Triple Negative Breast Cancer. Prof. Lobel started teaching at Lehman in Fall 2005. She served as Deputy Chair of History at Lehman in 2009-10, co-coordinator of the Writing Across the Curriculum Program and was active in the MALS program at Lehman and the Graduate Center. She was a devoted teacher and shared her historical expertise with various New York museums and educational initiatives. She published her first book, Urban Appetites: Food and Culture in Nineteenth-Century New York, in 2014, and was working on a popular biography of Catherine Beecher and a monograph focusing on Thomas Downing, the African-American oyster mogul and civil rights activist. Friends and colleagues remember Cindy with love and admiration for her courage, wisdom, humor, and zest for life, and for her willingness to step up to make things better for us all. She leaves behind her husband Peter, her sons Jonah and Ben, her mother Kaaren and her sisters Jodi, Susan and Debbie.

Jacob Judd received a Doctorate of Humane Letters at Lehman’s commencement ceremony in June, 2018. Professor Judd taught in the History Department at Lehman (and before that at Hunter College in the Bronx) from 1967 until his retirement in 1998. He served as the department’s chair for twelve years and has also served as acting Dean of Arts and Humanities at Lehman and as chair of the Retirees Chapter of the Professional Staff Congress. The History Department salutes our former chair, who is well-deserving of this honor.

Prof Robyn Spencer served as Visiting Endowed Chair of Women's Studies at Brooklyn College for 2018-19. She returned to the History faculty at Lehman last fall.

Students: check out these useful resources! Click the "Information for Students" tab on the left for tips on how to create proper footnotes and bibliographies, a guide to writing theses and long research projects, and more!

Please visit our new Alumni Page. We're currently collecting information on the exciting careers of our former students, and will be posting them as they come in!

Visit History on Facebook!

FacebookThe History Department now has a facebook presence: Learn more about its programs and events, and to join faculty and students in conversations about the past.

Read about Faculty recognition award recipients in History (2010-11).