sarah n. roth phd, associate professor, history

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Sarah N. Roth PhD

Associate Professor

  • PhD American History 2002

    University of Virginia (VA)

  • HIST 353 Colonial America to 1760

  • HIST 364 Race, Violence, and Memory

  • HIST 188 Visionaries, Rogues, and Lunatics

My research focuses on race and gender in the United States during the antebellum and Civil War periods. My recent book traces the shift in the ways black men were portrayed in 19th-century popular culture, from brutal savage to humble martyr. White women, it turns out, were the ones who effected this transformation to elevate their own status in American culture.

My next project involves collaboration with Widener students from the history and computer science departments, as well as scholars from other universities, to create a web archive of primary sources on the Nat Turner slave revolt. The Turner rebellion, which took place in Southampton County, Virginia, in 1831, was the bloodiest and most famous slave revolt in U.S. history. It continues to provoke controversy among historians and among the general public today.

Selected Awards

  • NEH Summer Institute, Johns Hopkins University, Seminar Participant, 2009

  • Gilder-Lehrman/Council of Independent Colleges, Seminar Participant, 2003

  • "Drawn to Art" Fellow, American Antiquarian Society, 2000

Selected Publications

  • Roth, Sarah N. Gender and Race in Antebellum Popular Culture. New York: Cambridge University Press, 2014.

  • Roth, Sarah N. "The Politics of the Page: Black Disfranchisement and the Image of the Savage Slave." The Pennsylvania Magazine of History and Biography 134, no. 3 (2010): 209–233.

  • Roth, Sarah N. "The Mind of a Child: Images of African Americans in Early Juvenile Fiction." Journal of the Early Republic 25, no. 1 (2005): 79–109.

American Studies Association (ASA), Society of Historians of the Early American Republic (SHEAR)