Dr. Timothy M. Roberts Contact information

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Dr. Timothy M. Roberts

Contact information
Address 602 South McArthur Street, Macomb, IL 61455 USA

Telephone + 309 298 1053 office

Fax + 309 298 2540

Email tm-roberts@wiu.edu

Skype tim.roberts3229
Education and academic experience

  • Ph.D., University of Oxford, 1998; M.A., Brandeis University, 1993; B.A., University of Virginia, 1987

    • Dissertation, “American Responses to the Revolutions of 1848”

    • M.A. thesis, “The Political and Moral Philosophy of Reinhold Niebuhr, Arthur Schlesinger, Jr., and Will Herberg”

  • Associate Professor of History, Western Illinois University, 2008-present. Promoted from Assistant Professor 2012. Courses taught include HIS 105, U.S. history to 1877; HIS 275, World history since 1000; HIS 303, American legal and constitutional history; HIS 397/491 The United States in the World [study abroad course/capstone senior seminar]; HIS 414G, Early American republic; HIS 415G, Civil War and Reconstruction; HIS 491 Capstone senior seminar: Atlantic slavery and revolutions; HIS 510, Graduate student research seminar: researching in printed sources of the nineteenth century; HIS 511 Graduate student readings seminar: The American Civil War

  • Assistant Professor of History, Bilkent University, Ankara, Turkey, 2002-2008. Courses taught included HIS 431 U.S. history to 1877; HIS 432 U.S. history since 1865; HIS 433 American political history; HIS 420 America in the World Since 1898; HIS 424 the American Revolution; HIS 508, Historical methodology; HIS 599 Master’s thesis; HIS 699 Ph.D. dissertation; HIS 544 Comparative slavery; HIS 595 Seminar in U.S. history: readings in the Civil War era; HIS 596 Seminar in U.S. history II: readings in modern U.S. foreign relations; HIS 559 History of capitalism; HIS 575 U.S. labor and immigration history; HIS 580: Early U.S. foreign relations; HIS 587: Topics in American legal history; HIST 534, History of American radicalism.

  • Visiting Assistant Professor, Metropolitan State College of Denver, 2000-2002. Courses taught included U.S. history to 1877; U.S. history since 1865; the Civil War and Reconstruction; U.S. history since 1945.


  • American Exceptionalism, 4 vols. of annotated documents from 17th to 20th centuries, co-edited with Lindsay DiCuirci (London: Pickering & Chatto, 2012)

  • Distant Revolutions: 1848 and the Challenge to American Exceptionalism (Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2009), reviewed widely, including by the Journal of American History 97 (March 2011), 1122-1123, and the American Historical Review 116 (October 2011), 1129-1130

Refereed articles and essays in books
Articles about teaching

  • “Untangling American History in Turkey,” Chronicle of Higher Education 25 April 2012, online at http://chronicle.com/blogs/worldwise/untangling-american-history-in-turkey/29427

  • “Learning About Civil War, Separatism, and Nation-Building Through Teaching in the Turkish Republic,” Journal of American History 96 (March 2010), 1119-1122

  • “Teaching by Analogy: Comparing American and Turkish History,” Common-place: The Interactive Journal of Early American Life, October 2007, online at http://www.historycooperative.org/journals/cp/vol-08/no-01/school/

Research articles

  • “Lajos Kossuth and the Permeable American Orient of the Mid-Nineteenth Century,” forthcoming in Diplomatic History

  • “Construction of National Identities in Early Republics: A Comparison of the American and Turkish Cases,” co-authored with Emrah Şahin, Journal of the Historical Society 10 (December 2010), 507-531

  • “Commercial Philanthropy: American Missionaries and the American Opium Trade in Izmir During the First Part of the Nineteenth Century,” Journal of Mediterranean Studies 19 (Fall 2010), 371-388, reprinted in The Role of the American Board in the World, edited by Clifford Putney and Paul Burlin (Eugene: Wipf & Stock, 2012)

  • “The relevance of Giuseppe Mazzini’s ideas of insurgency to the American sectional crisis of the 1850s,” in Giuseppe Mazzini and the Globalization of Democratic Nationalism, edited by Christopher Bayly and Eugenio Biagini (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2008), 311-322

  • "Margaret Fuller's Rome and the Problem of Provincial American Democracy,” Patterns of Prejudice 40 (February 2006), 45-60

  • "'Revolutions Have Become the Bloody Toy of the Multitude': European Revolutions, the South, and the Crisis of 1850," Journal of the Early Republic 25 (June 2005), 259-283

  • "Now the enemy is within our borders: the impact of European revolutions on American perceptions of violence before the Civil War," ATQ: 19th C. American Literature and Culture 17 (September 2003), 197-214

  • "America and Europe in 1848 and 2003," Historically Speaking: The Bulletin of the Historical Society 4 (April 2003), 18-19

  • “The United States and the European Revolutions of 1848,” in The European Revolutions of 1848 and the Americas, edited by Guy Thomson (London: Institute of Latin American Studies, 2002), 76-99

  • “The United States and the Revolutions of 1848,” co-authored with Daniel Walker Howe, in The Revolutions in Europe 1848-1849: From Reform to Reaction, edited by R. J. W. Evans and Hartmut Pogge von Strandmann (New York: Oxford University Press, 2000), 157-179

  • “Diplomatische Reaktionen der Vereinigten Staaten während der Revolutionsjahre 1848/49,” in Achtundvierziger Forty-Eighters: Die deutsche Revolution von 1848/49, die Vereinigten Staaten und der amerikanische Bürgerkrieg, edited by Wolfgang Hochbruck and Ulrich Bachteler, translated by Henning Zimmermann (Münster: Westfälisches Dampfboot, 2000), 29-41

Current and future research projects

  • Edited collection of letters of an Illinois soldier and his wife during the Civil War

  • American and French liberal imperialism in comparison, 1830-1875

  • The interaction of American missionaries and merchants in Asia during the nineteenth century

Selected achievements of students I have supervised

  • Joel Koch, B.A. degree, Western Illinois University, 2012, winner of the Western Illinois University 2012 Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society Undergraduate Research Paper Award for research article written under my supervision, “Cuban Players in Major League Baseball and U.S. Foreign Policy”

  • Victoria Stewart, M.A. degree, Western Illinois University, 2011, research article written under my supervision, “William H. Randolph and the Civil War Draft: His Life, Death, and the Trial of His Murderers,” now a Ph.D. student at Northern Illinois University for study of draft resistance during the Civil War

  • Eric Willey, M.A. degree, Western Illinois University, 2010, research article written under my supervision, “The Squatters and the Polish Exiles: Frontier and Whig Definitions of Republicanism in Jacksonian Illinois,” Journal of Illinois History 13 (Summer 2010)

  • Adam Bednar, B.A. degree, Western Illinois University, 2009, winner of the Western Illinois University 2009 Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society Undergraduate Research Paper Award for a research article written under my supervision, "The Social Institution of Dueling in Antebellum America (1800 - 1830)"

  • Robert Deveraux, M.A. degree, Western Illinois University, 2009, winner of the Kevin Carroll Award for the Best Graduate Student Paper in Military History at the 2009 Missouri Valley History Conference, for presentation of a research paper written under my supervision, “The First American Fleet: the Sailing Warships of the Quasi-War, 1798-1801”
  • Zennure Koseman, Ph.D. degree, Hacettepe University, 2008, for a dissertation written under my co-supervision with Ufuk Özdağ, “"From the Way to Wealth to the Gospel of Wealth: The Transformation in the Concept of Success in American Literature”; now assistant professor at Inonu University, Turkey

  • Bahar Gursel, Ph.D. degree, Bilkent University, 2007, for a dissertation written under my supervision, “Friendship, Crisis, and Estrangement: U.S.-Italian relations, 1871-1920”; Award of Ph.D. required publication of a refereed research article, “Citizenship and Military Service in Italian–American Relations, 1901–1918,” Journal of the Gilded Age and Progressive Era 7 (July 2008); now assistant professor at Middle East Technical University, Turkey

  • Melike Tokay, M.A. degree, Bilkent University, 2006, for a thesis written under my supervision, “The American women's foreign mission movement: ‘cooperation of Eve with the Redeemer’ in evangelical missions”

  • Emrah Şahin, M.A. degree, Bilkent University, 2004, for a thesis written under my supervision, “Errand into the East: a history of evangelical American Protestant missionaries and their missions to Ottoman Istanbul during the nineteenth century,” now a Ph.D. graduate of McGill University and lecturer in Turkish Studies at the University of Florida

  • Ozlem Boztas, M.A. degree, Bilkent University, 2003, for a thesis written under my supervision, “Empowerment through education: Mexican American agency measured through primary education in New Mexico, 1846-1920”

Journals edited

  • “Race and Ethnicity in America,” Journal of American Studies of Turkey 28 (Fall 2008)

  • “U.S. History,” co-edited with Edward Kohn, Journal of American Studies of Turkey 22 (Fall 2005)

Selected book reviews

  • Daniel Kilbride, Being American in Europe, 1750-1860 (Johns Hopkins Press, 2013), in Journal of American History 100 (March 2014)

  • Barbara Reeves-Ellington, Domestic Frontiers: Gender, Reform, and American Interventions in the Ottoman Balkans and the Near East (University of Massachusetts Press, 2013), in International Bulletin of Missionary Research 37 (October 2013), 238

  • Andre Fleche, Revolution of 1861: The American Civil War in the Age of Nationalist Conflict (University of North Carolina Press, 2012), in Register of the Kentucky Historical Society 110 (Summer/Autumn 2012), 585-587

  • Amanda Foreman, World on Fire: Britain's Crucial Role in the American Civil War (Random House, 2011), in American Historical Review 117 (June 2012), 816-818

  • Secession as an International Phenomenon: From America's Civil War to Contemporary Separatist Movements, edited by Don Doyle (University of Georgia Press, 2010), Journal of Southern History 78 (May 2012), 467-469

  • Stanley Harrold, Border War: Fighting Over Slavery before the Civil War (University of North Carolina Press, 2010), in Journal of the Illinois State Historical Society 105 (Spring 2012), 98-100

  • “Response to reviews of Distant Revolutions: 1848 and the Challenge to American Exceptionalism,” H-Diplo Roundtable Review 12 (February 2011), 28-36, online at http://www.h-net.org/~diplo/roundtables/PDF/Roundtable-XII-3.pdf

  • Matthew Guterl, American Mediterranean: Southern Slaveowners in an Age of Emancipation (Harvard University Press, 2008), in Enterprise & Society 12 (September 2011), 691-693

  • Rachel Hope Cleves, Reign of Terror in America: Visions of Violence from Anti-Jacobinism to Antislavery (Cambridge University Press, 2009), in Common-place The Interactive Journal of Early American Life. October 2009, online at http://www.common-place.org

  • Charles Weeks, Paths to a Middle Ground: The Diplomacy of Natchez, Boukfouka, Nogales, and San Fernando de las Barrancas, 1791–1795 (University of Alabama Press, 2005); Rafe Blaufarb, Bonapartists in the Borderlands: French Exiles and Refugees on the Gulf Coast (University of Alabama Press, 2005); and Sean Goudie, Creole America: The West Indies and the Formation of Literature and Culture in the New Republic (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2006), in the Journal of the Early Republic 28 (Fall 2008), 511-517

  • Barry Rubin and Judith Colp Rubin, Hating America: A History (Oxford University Press, 2004), in H-Net: Humanities and Social Sciences Online, H-USA, H-Net Reviews. September 2006, online at http://h-net.org/reviews/review_search.php

  • “A Different Sort of Marshall Plan: A Review of the Turkish film Kurtlar Vadisi – Irak [Valley of the Wolves – Iraq],” in Patterns of Prejudice 40 (Summer 2006), 281-284

  • Eliga Gould and Peter Onuf, eds., Empire and Nation: The American Revolution in the Atlantic World (Johns Hopkins University Press, 2004), in History: Reviews of New Books 34 (Fall 2005), 5

  • Michael Morrison and Melinda Zook, eds., Revolutionary Currents: Nation Building in the Transatlantic World (Rowman & Littlefield, 2004), in History: Reviews of New Books 33 (Fall 2004), 37-38

  • Wolfgang Schivelbusch, The Culture of Defeat: On National Trauma, Mourning, and Recovery, trans., Jefferson Chase (Metropolitan Books, 2001), in History: Reviews of New Books 31 (Summer 2003), 177

  • Elisabeth Glaser and Hermann Wellenreuther, eds., Bridging the Atlantic: The Question of American Exceptionalism in Perspective (Cambridge University Press, 2002), in History: Reviews of New Books 31 (Spring 2003), 118

  • Thomas Murphy, A Land Without Castles: The Changing Image of America in Europe, 1780-1830 (Lexington Books, 2001), in History: Reviews of New Books 30 (Summer 2002), 159-160

  • Daniel J. Elazar and John Kincaid, eds., Covenant Connection: From Federal Theology to Modern Federalism (Lexington Books, 2000), in H-Net: Humanities and Social Sciences Online, H-Ideas, H-Net Reviews. September 2001, online at http://h-net.org/reviews/review_search.php

Selected news commentaries

  • “U.S.-China: Nineteenth-Century Anglo-American Rivalry Redux?” distributed February 10, 2014 by the History News Network, online at http://hnn.us/article/154675

  • “Responsibility to Protect? A History of Humanitarian Intervention,” [on the U.S. visit of

the Hungarian revolutionary Lajos Kossuth in 1852, and what it revealed about U.S.

“exceptionalism” and “exemplarism”] Interview for the Virginia Foundation for the Humanities Backstory with the American History Guys, aired September 13, 2013, online at http://backstoryradio.org/shows/responsibility-to-protect/

  • “Arab Revolutions,” [parallels between the European Revolutions of 1848 and the Middle East uprisings of 2011] Interview for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation Sunday Edition, aired 6 March 2011, online at http://www.cbc.ca/thesundayedition/shows/2011/03/06/arab-revolutions---esther-wheelwright---spring-breakup/#hour1

  • “The Challenges of 1848 Reprised in the Middle East Today,” distributed February 17, 2011 by the History News Service, online at http://historynewsservice.org/author/tmroberts

  • “Obama’s Challenge: What Would Lincoln Do?” Interview for Fox News, distributed February 11, 2009, online at http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2009/02/11/obamas-challenge-lincoln

  • “Could Obama’s Internationalism Cost Him Support at Home?” [comparison of conservatives’ criticisms of Presidents Obama and Lincoln], distributed January 25, 2009 by the History News Network, online at http://hnn.us/articles/58538.html

  • "The 1942 Internments and Today's Security Crisis" [the lessons of the discriminatory policies of the homefront during World War II], distributed October 11, 2001 by the History News Service, online at http://historynewsservice.org/author/tmroberts

Reference articles

  • “Government,” “Politics,” two articles, co-authored with students David Sprung and Tim Ballard, for American Centuries: The Ideas, Issues, and Trends that Made U.S. History: the 19th century, edited by Melanie Gustafson (New York: Infobase Publishing, 2011)

  • “The Democratic Party,” one article for The Early Republic and Antebellum America: An Encyclopedia of Social, Political, Cultural, and Economic History, edited by Christopher Bates (Armonk: M. E. Sharpe, 2010)

  • “The Early National Period and Expansion, 1783-1859: An Overview,” and “Labor and Employment, 1860-1875,” two articles for Handbook to Life in America, edited by Rodney Carlisle (New York: Facts on File, 2009)

  • “Atlanticism,” “Sugar,” and “Timber,” three articles for France and the Americas: Culture, Politics, History, edited by Bill Marshall (Santa Barbara: ABC-Clio, 2005)

  • “America as Interpreted by Foreign Observers,” “Autobiography of Malcolm X,” “Freemasons,” “Harpers Ferry Raid,” “Immediatism,” “Kennebec River Settlements,” “Kilroy Was Here,” “Know-Nothing Party,” “New England Antislavery Society,” “New England Emigrant Aid Company,” “Oberlin Movement,” “Port Authorities,” twelve articles for the Dictionary of American History, edited by Stanley Kutler (New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 2003)

Selected invited papers

  • The 1848 Revolutions, The American Civil War, and The Republican Empire,” keynote address for conference on “Transatlantic Revolutionary Cultures," Center for Advanced Studies, Ludwig Maximilian University, Munich, April 25, 2013

  • “Is Hungary in the East or West? Lajos Kossuth in America and conceptions of ‘western civilization’,” presentation at conference on “Global Intellectual History,” New York University, April 9-10, 2010

  • “The importance of ‘founding fathers’ in early republican nation-building: Washington and Ataturk in comparative perspective,” at the Turkish Military Academy, Ankara, Turkey, December 30, 2004

  • “American policy in the German states during the 1848 revolutions,” lecture series at German universities and centers of American Studies in Frankfurt, Heidelberg, Tubingen, and Freiburg, November 1998

Grants and scholarships received

  • J. William Fulbright lectureship, Zhejiang University, China, September 2013-June 2014

  • National Endowment for the Humanities, “Created Equal: America's Civil Rights Struggle,” four documentary films and public conversations about the changing meanings of freedom and equality in America,” hosted by Western Illinois University Malpass Library, February-April 2014 [I wrote the grant application]

  • American Library Association/National Endowment for the Humanities Grant, “Let’s Talk About It: Making Sense of the American Civil War - a scholar-led reading and discussion program for public audiences,” hosted by Western Illinois University Malpass Library, December 2011-April 2012 [I wrote the grant application]

  • Congregational Christian Historical Society Library Travel Fellowship, 2011

  • Joan Nordell Research Fellowship, Houghton Library, Harvard University, 2010

  • American Library Association/National Endowment for the Humanities Grant, “Lincoln: The Constitution and the Civil War - a traveling exhibition to libraries,” hosted by Western Illinois University Malpass Library, October-November, 2010 [I wrote the grant application]

  • National Endowment for the Humanities Summer Seminar for College and University Teachers, “The American Civil War at 150: New Approaches,” Savannah, Georgia, June-July, 2010

  • National Endowment for the Humanities Summer Seminar for College and University Teachers, “Rethinking America in a Global Perspective,” Washington, DC, June-July, 2008

  • Andrew W. Mellon Foundation research fellowship, Massachusetts Historical Society, 2007

  • Ralph D. Gray Best Article Prize of the Society of Historians of the Early American Republic, 2006

  • Andrew W. Mellon Foundation research fellowship, Virginia State Historical Society, 1995

  • London Royal Historical Society research grant, 1995

  • Brandeis University graduate scholarship, 1992-1993

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