Department of History and the College
Kathleen Belew specializes in the recent history of the United States, examining the long aftermath of warfare. Her first book, Bring the War Home: The White Power Movement and Paramilitary America (under contract with Harvard University Press), explores how white power activists wrought a cohesive social movement through a common story about the Vietnam War and its weapons, uniforms, and technologies. By uniting previously disparate Ku Klux Klan, neo-Nazi, skinhead, and other groups, the movement carried out escalating acts of violence that ricocheted through Latin America, Southern Africa, and the United States, revealing white power as a transnational phenomenon.
Belew is currently at work on two new projects, one focusing on processes of militarization in the domestic United States and the other on ideas of the apocalypse in American history and culture. Her research has been supported by the Andrew W. Mellon and Jacob K. Javits Foundations, as well as by the American Historical Association.
She earned a PhD in American studies from Yale University and a BA in comparative history of ideas from the University of Washington, where she was named a Dean’s Medalist in the Humanities. She later held postdoctoral fellowships from Northwestern and Rutgers Universities.