Faculty Books

In a brisk revisionist history, William Rowe challenges the standard narrative of Qing China as a decadent, inward-looking state that failed to keep pace with the modern West.

The Great Qing was the second major Chinese empire ruled by foreigners. Three strong Manchu emperors worked diligently to secure an alliance with the conquered Ming gentry, though many of their social edicts—especially the requirement that ethnic Han men wear queues—were fiercely resisted. As advocates of a “universal” empire, Qing rulers also achieved an enormous expansion of the Chinese realm over the course of three centuries, including the conquest and incorporation of Turkic and Tibetan peoples in the west, vast migration into the southwest, and the colonization of Taiwan.

Despite this geographic range and the accompanying social and economic complexity, the Qing ideal of “small government” worked well when outside threats were minimal. But the nineteenth-century Opium Wars forced China to become a player in a predatory international contest involving Western powers, while the devastating uprisings of the Taiping and Boxer rebellions signaled an urgent need for internal reform. Comprehensive state-mandated changes during the early twentieth century were not enough to hold back the nationalist tide of 1911, but they provided a new foundation for the Republican and Communist states that would follow.

This original, thought-provoking history of China’s last empire is a must-read for understanding the challenges facing China today.


London’s Soho district underwent a spectacular transformation between the late Victorian era and the end of the Second World War: its old buildings and dark streets infamous for sex, crime, political disloyalty, and ethnic diversity became a center of culinary and cultural tourism servicing patrons of nearby shops and theaters. Indulgences for the privileged and the upwardly mobile edged a dangerous, transgressive space imagined to be “outside” the nation.

Treating Soho as exceptional, but also representative of London’s urban transformation, Judith Walkowitz shows how the area’s foreignness and porousness were key to the explosion of culture and development of modernity in the first half of the 20th century. She draws on a vast and unusual range of sources to stitch together a rich patchwork quilt of vivid stories and unforgettable characters, revealing how Soho became a showcase for a new cosmopolitan identity.


With five carefully selected documents per chapter, this two-volume primary source reader presents a wide range of documents representing political, social, and cultural history in a manageable, accessible way. Thirty-two new documents infuse the collection with the voices of an even wider range of historical actors. Expertly edited by Michael P. Johnson, one of the authors of The American Promise, the readings can be used to spark discussion in any classroom and fit into any syllabus. Headnotes and discussion questions help students approach the documents, and comparative questions encourage students to make connections across documents.


With five carefully selected documents per chapter, this two-volume primary source reader presents a wide range of documents representing political, social, and cultural history in a manageable, accessible way. Thirty-two new documents infuse the collection with the voices of an even wider range of historical actors. Expertly edited by Michael P. Johnson, one of the authors of The American Promise, the readings can be used to spark discussion in any classroom and fit into any syllabus. Headnotes and discussion questions help students approach the documents, and comparative questions encourage students to make connections across documents.


The Creative Society is the first history to look at modern America through the eyes of its emerging ranks of professional experts, including lawyers, scientists, doctors, administrators, business managers, teachers, policy specialists, and urban planners. Covering the period from the 1890s to the early 21st century, Louis Galambos examines the history that shaped professionals and, in turn, their role in shaping modern America. He considers the roles of education, anti-Semitism, racism, and elitism in shaping and defining the professional cadre and examines how matters of gender, race, and ethnicity determined whether women, African Americans, and immigrants from Europe, Asia, Latin America, and the Middle East were admitted to the professional ranks. He also discusses the role professionals played in urbanizing the United States, keeping the economy efficient and innovative, showing the government how to provide the people a greater measure of security and equity, and guiding the world’s leading industrial power in coping with its complex, frequently dangerous foreign relations.


enlightenment governance and reform in spain and its empire book cover

This book offers a new interpretation of political reform in Spain and its American empire in the second half of the 18th century. It examines the intellectual foundation of commercial, administrative, and colonial policy during the tumultuous reigns of Charles III and Charles IV.


Offering a rare pan-Caribbean perspective on a region that has moved from the very center of the western world to its periphery, The Caribbean: The Genesis of a Fragmented Nationalism journeys through five centuries of economic and social development, emphasizing such topics as the slave-run plantation economy, the changes in political control over the centuries, the impact of the United States, and the effects of Castro’s Cuban revolution on the area. The book integrates social analysis with political narrative, providing a unique perspective on the problems of nation-building in an area of dense populations, scarce resources, and an explosive political climate.


saint and nation book cover

In early 17th-century Spain, the Castilian parliament voted to elevate the newly beatified Teresa of Avila to co-patron saint of Spain alongside the traditional patron, Santiago. Saint and Nation examines Spanish devotion to the cult of saints and the controversy over national patron sainthood to provide an original account of the diverse ways in which the early modern nation was expressed and experienced by monarch and town, center and periphery. By analyzing the dynamic interplay of local and extra-local, royal authority and nation, tradition and modernity, church and state, and masculine and feminine within the co-patronage debate, Erin Rowe reconstructs the sophisticated balance of plural identities that emerged in Castile during a central period of crisis and change in the Spanish world.


This collection, skillfully edited by Michael P. Johnson, offers students the essential Lincoln in a brief and accessible format that makes this a must-assign edition for courses covering the antebellum period, slavery, and the Civil War. From famous documents like the Lincoln-Douglas debates and the second inaugural address to crucial memoranda and letters, it reveals the development of Lincoln’s views on all the critical issues of the day, including free labor, antebellum politics and the Republican party, slavery, secession, the Civil War, and emancipation. Significantly streamlined for the second edition to a more student-friendly length, the volume retains its successful format: documents are organized thematically and chronologically, with editorial headnotes that provide just enough context for students to understand the significance of each selection. In addition to Johnson’s widely praised biographical introduction, a chronology, maps and pictures, questions for consideration, selected bibliography, and a comprehensive index all enhance students’ understanding of this crucial period—and this crucial figure—in U.S. history.


Domestic Violence and the Law in Colonial and Postcolonial Africa reveals the ways in which domestic space and domestic relationships take on different meanings in African contexts that extend the boundaries of family obligation, kinship, and dependency.