The Graduate Program

Annual Newsletter

July, 2020

We welcome our incoming Ph.D. candidates for Fall 2020!


East Asia

Sally Greenland



Ifadha Sifar


Latin America History

Rosa Mantilla


Medieval Europe

Claire Dwyer

Charles Steinman


Middle East History

Janna Aladdin

Janina Santer


Modern European History

Julia Burke

Rochelle Malcom

Zinaida Osipova

Marie Robin


South Asia History

Kamini Massod

Anusha Sundar


United States History

Josias Agustin Mendez

Juliana DeVaan

Samuel Niu

Seokju Oh

Kayla Smith

Jordan Villegas


Ph.D.s Conferred in 2019-20

Allen, David Every Citizen a Statesman: Building a Democracy for Foreign Policy in the American Century  
Sponsor: Matthew Connelly

Bhattacharyya, Tania Ocean Bombay, 1839-1937: Space, itinerancy and community in an imperial port city   
Sponsor: Manan Ahmed

Cho, Eunsung The Thread of Juche: Vinalon and Materially-Embodied Interdependencies in North Korea, 1930-2018
Sponsor: Eugenia Lean & Jungwon Kim

Elmer, Hannah Alive Enough? A Conflict over Divine Presence and Natural Power in the Reanimation of Dead Infants, 1400-1545
Sponsor: Kayle

Gerien-Chen, James Jin Between Empire and Nation: Taiwan Sekimin and the Making of Japanese Empire in South China, 1895–1937
Sponsor: Carol Gluck

Igra, Alma  Farm to Pharmacy: Nutrition, Animals, and Governance in Britain 1870-1945
Sponsor: Susan Pederson

Koeth Stephen The Suburban Church: Catholic Parishes and Politics in Metropolitan New York, 1945-1985
Sponsor: Ira Katznelson

Murphy, Anna Junn Corporatizing Defense: Management Expertise and the Transformation of the Cold War U.S. Military
Sponsor: Elizabeth Blackmar

Neubauer, Jack  Adopted by the World: China and the Rise of Global Intimacy
Sponsor: Lean Lillevik

Nofil, Briana Detention Power: Jails, Camps, and the Origins of Immigrant Incarceration, 1900-2002 
Sponsor: Hsueh-Hwa Ngai

Okan, Orcun Coping with Transitions: The Connected Construction of Turkey, Syria, Lebanon and Iraq, 1918-1928
Sponsor: Rashid Khalidi
O'Neil, Sean  The Art of Signs: Symbolic Notation and Visual Thinking in Early Modern Europe, 1600-1800
Sponsor: Pamela Smith

Provezano, Luca Under the Paving Stones: Militant Protest and Practices of the State in France and the Federal Republic of Germany, 1968-1977
 Sponsor: Moyn

Resnikoff, Jason The Misanthropic Sublime: Automation and the Meaning of Work in the Postwar United States
Sponsor: Casey Blake

Rutherford, Emily The Politics and Culture of Gender in British Universities, 1860–1935
Sponsor: Susan Pedersen

Sarwate, Rahul Reimagining the Modern Hindu Self: Caste, Untouchability and Hindu Theology in Colonial South Asia, 1899-1948
Sponsor: Manan Ahmed

Serby, Benjamin Gay Liberation and the Politics of the Self in Postwar America
Sponsor: Casey Blake

Shinnar, Shulamit The Best of Doctors Go to Hell”: Rabbinic Medical Culture in Late Antiquity (200-600 CE)
 Sponsor: Beth Ann Berkowitz

Vuljevic, Suzana The Crisis of Spirit: Pan-Balkan Idealism, Transnational Cultural-Diplomatic Networks and Intellectual Cooperation in Interwar Southeast Europe, 1930-1941
 Sponsor: Mark Mazower

Congratulations to all those who successfully defended their dissertations in 2018-19!

Alcenat, Westenley.  “Children of Africa, Shall be Haytians”: Prince Saunders, revolutionary transnationalism, and the foundations of Black emigration 
Sponsor: Eric Foner

Aumoithe, George.  Strange bedfellows: Public health and welfare politics in the United States, 1965-2000 
Sponsor: Alice Kessler-Harris

Bhattacharyya, Tania.  Ocean Bombay: Space, itinerancy and community in an imperial port city, 1839-1937  
Sponsor: Manan Ahmed

Buljina, Harun.  Empire, nation, and the Islamic world: Bosnian Muslim reformists between the Habsburg and Ottoman Empires, 1901-1914
Sponsor: Mark Mazower

Ferguson, Susanna.  Tracing tarbiya: Women, education, and childrearing in Lebanon and Egypt, 1860-1939  
Sponsor: Rashid Khalidi

Freeman, Mary.  The politics of correspondence: Letter writing in the campaign against slavery in the United States 
Sponsor: Barbara Fields

Gerien-Chen, James.  Between empire and nation: Taiwan Sekimin and the making of Japanese empire in South China, 1895-1937
Sponsor: Carol Gluck

Gonzalez Le Saux, Marianne.  The Rule of Lawyers: Legal Profession, Politics and the Social in Chile, 1925-1989
Sponsor: Nara Milanich

Ispahani, Merve.  Building sovereignty in the late Ottoman world: Imperial subjects, consular networks, and documentation of individual identities 
Sponsor: Rashid Khalidi

Kaplan, Abram.  The myth of Greek algebra: Progress and community in early-modern mathematics
Sponsor: Matthew Jones

Kressel, Daniel.  Technicians of the spirit: Post-fascist technocratic authoritarianism in Spain, Argentina, and Chile, 1945-1988 
Sponsor: Pablo Piccato

Kung, Chien Wen.  Nationalist China in the postcolonial Philippines: Diasporic anticommunism, shared sovereignty, and ideological Chineseness, 1945-1970s  
Sponsor: Marwa Elshakry

Kuzuoglu, Ulug.  Codes of modernity: Infrastructures of language and Chinese scripts in an age of global information and revolution 
Sponsor: Madeleine Zelin

Luo, Weiwei. The common good: Property and state-making in late imperial China 
Sponsor: Madeleine Zelin

Marcus, David.  In socialism’s twilight: Michael Walzer and the politics of the long New Left 
Sponsor: Casey Blake

Mulder, Nicholas. The economic weapon: Interwar internationalism and the rise of sanctions, 1914-1945  
Sponsor: Mark Mazower

Murphy, Anna.  Corporatizing defense: Management expertise and the transformation of the Cold War U.S. military 
Sponsor: Betsy Blackmar

Newman, Rachel. Transnational ambitions: Student migrants and the making of a national future in twentieth century Mexico
Sponsor: Pablo Piccato

Resnikoff, Jason.  The misanthropic sublime: Automation and the meaning of work in the postwar United States
Sponsor: Casey Blake

Shinnar, Shulamit.  “The Best of Doctors Go to Hell”: Rabbinic medical culture in late antiquity (200-600 C.E.)
Sponsor: Beth Berkowitz

Vendell, Dominic. Scribes and the vocation of politics in the Maratha empire, 1708-1818
Sponsor: Nicholas Dirks

Yee, Ethan.  The burden of forgiveness: Franciscans’ impact on penitential practices in the thirteenth century  
Sponsor: Neslihan Senocak

Zakar, Adrien.  The disembodied eye: Technologies of surveillance and the logistics of perception in the Ottoman Empire and Syria, 1900-1930 
Sponsor: Christopher L. Brown

Zárate, Arthur.  The making of a Muslim reformer: Muḥammad al-Ghazálī (1917-1996) and Islam in postcolonial Egypt, 1947-1967 
Sponsor: Marwa Elshakry

Dissertation Write-up Fellowships Awarded for the 2018-19 Academic Year (Update in progress)


Doris G. Quinn Fellowship

Owain Lawson
Christopher W. Jones
Micah McElroy
Robin Reich

Charlotte W. Newcombe Doctoral Dissertation Fellowship


Harriet Zuckerman Dissertation Completion Fellowship


Mellon/ACLS Dissertation Completion Fellowship


 CES/Mellon Dissertation Completion Fellowship


Lowenheim History Fellowship


Fellowships, Awards, Grants, & Babies (Update in progress)

Halimat Somotan has started a pre-doctoral fellowship at the Carter G. Woodson Institute for African-American and African Studies, at the University of Virginia.

Heath Rojas, a first-year doctoral student, won the Raymond J. Cunningham Prize for the best article published in a history department journal by an undergraduate. His winning article, titled “A Model of Revolutionary Regicide: The Role of Seventeenth-Century English History in the Trial of King Louis XVI,” appeared in Herodotus in Spring 2018.

Madeline Woker was named a Spring 2019 fellow of the Camargo Foundation Core Program, and her article “Edwin Seligman, initiator of global progressive public finance” will be published in the Journal of Global History in November 2018.

Amanda Martin-Hardin published an article (titled “Nature in Black and White: Summer Camps and Racialized Landscapes in the Photography of Gordon Parks”) in the journal Environmental History.

The Heyman Center for the Humanities named doctoral candidates Liz Dolfi (Religion), Alma Igra (History), Paul Katz (History), Warren Kluber (Theatre), and Emily Rutherford (History) as its 2018-2019 graduate student fellows.

The National Science Foundation awarded grants supporting the dissertation research of four GSAS doctoral students: David Alfaro Serrano (Economics), Eduardo Romero Dianderas (Anthropology), Aaron Plasek (History), and Anna Schirrer (Anthropology).

Conor Wilkinson won the Graduate Student Best Paper Prize at the South East Regional Seminar in African Studies & Southeast Africanist Network Annual Joint Meeting, for his paper “Ancestors and Family Life in Eastern and Southern Tanzania at the Turn of the Twentieth Century.”

Robin Reich won the prize for Best Student Paper (for “Nearly Gold and Nearly Perfect? Meaning and Materiality of Copper-Alloy in Twelfth-Century Sicily”) from the Medieval Academy of America at its 2018 Annual Meeting.

Benjamin Serby published an article (“The Dialectical Liberalism of Richard Hofstadter”) in the journal Society.

A group of Columbia faculty, librarians, and students—including doctoral candidates Zeinab Azarbadegan (History), Mahmood Gharavi (Religion), and Sadegh Ansar (Middle Eastern, South Asian, and African Studies)—received a $500,000 grant from the Council on Library and Information Resources to digitize the university’s collection of Islamic manuscripts and paintings.

An award from the National Science Foundation will support the dissertation research of History Ph.D. candidate Sean O’Neil, who is studying the history of science in early modern Europe.

Baby Historians