Priscilla Murolo

on leave fall semester

BA, Sarah Lawrence College. MA, PhD, Yale University. Special interest in US labor, women’s, and social history; author, The Common Ground of Womanhood: Class, Gender, and Working Girls’ Clubs; co-author, From the Folks Who Brought You the Weekend: A Short, Illustrated History of Labor in the United States; contributor to various encyclopedias and anthologies and to educational projects sponsored by labor and community organizations; reviewer for Journal of American History, Journal of Urban History, International Labor and Working Class History, and other historical journals; contributor and editorial associate, Radical History Review; recipient of Hewlett-Mellon grants. SLC, 1988–

Undergraduate Courses 2017-2018


Revolutionary Lives: Biographical Perspectives on the Black Freedom Movement

Intermediate , Seminar—Spring

Open to sophomores, juniors and seniors.

The Black Freedom Movement that erupted after World War II rallied African American communities across the country, set the stage for a host of kindred movements in the United States, and inspired many millions around the world. This course explores the Freedom Movement’s history through the life stories of women and men who mobilized under its banners, through organizations including civil rights groups like the NAACP and Southern Christian Leadership Conference, Marxist parties of various sorts, and nationalist formations such as the Black Panther Party, the Revolutionary Action Movement, and the Republic of New Africa. Readings include works of biography, autobiography, and memoir that tell the riveting stories of both high-profile figures—Rosa Parks, Malcolm X, Angela Davis, and others—and foot soldiers whose names were never widely known outside the movement or have since been forgotten. Their personal histories offer uncommon perspectives on the Freedom Movement by illuminating its international connections, for example, and by challenging the conventional wisdom that civil rights and Black Power activists were fundamentally at odds. These histories also invite us to ponder timeless questions about personal responsibility and the power of individuals to change the world. The course is a reading-intensive seminar.

Related Disciplines

Previous Courses

Thesis Seminar in Women’s and Gender History


This yearlong course is designed for students who are writing M.A. theses in women’s and gender history. We will discuss the historiographical dimensions of thesis work; assess various research methods, interpretive models, and theories of history; and grapple with practical questions about writing and documentation. Readings include historical scholarship, theoretical works, and research guides. At critical junctures, students will also read and evaluate each others’ work.


Visions/Revisions: Issues in the History of Women and Gender

Advanced , Seminar—Year

Core class required of all first-year Women’s History Graduate Students.

This seminar surveys path-breaking studies in the history of women, gender and related subjects. Course readings, which include both theory and historiography, exemplify major trends in feminist scholarship since the 1960s—from early challenges to androcentric worldviews to the current stress on differences among women and multiple systems of dominance and subordination. Class discussions range from fundamental questions (e.g., What is feminism? Is “women” a meaningful category?) to theoretical, interpretive, and methodological debates among women’s historians. The course is designed to help advanced students of women’s history clarify research interests by assessing the work of their predecessors. MA candidates will also use the course to define thesis projects.