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UHD History Student Lands Top Magazine Job, Credits UHD Counseling and Mentoring

UHD History and English alumn, Randy KrinksyRandy Krinsky planned on completing a business degree at UHD, but was counseled by UHD Career Development Center to pursue his interest in History. As a self-proclaimed film buff, Krinsky began writing about film in his free time. He has since become a lead writer for a popular entertainment magazine. In this position he reviews both major and independent films. Krinsky graduated in 2014 with a degree in history and was “history student of the year.” Presently, he is completing a second degree at UHD in English with a concentration in Film Studies. His plan is to become directly involved in the production of film, as a screenwriter or script supervisor.

UHD history students tour the “Postcards from the Trenches: Germans and Americans Visualize the Great War” exhibit

On Saturday, February 21, students from UHD's Walter Prescott Webb Historical Society and the History Honor Society of Phi Alpha Theta toured The Printing Museum in Houston. Accompanied by faculty advisors Drs. José Álvarez and Nancy López, the students were treated to a special presentation conducted by co-curator of the exhibition, Dr. Irene Guenther, History professor at UH’s Honors College. The exhibition commemorates the centennial of the start of World War I through the hand-painted postcards of German soldier Otto Schubert. In dozens of postcards he mailed to his sweetheart back in Dresden, Schubert depicted his personal life and death experiences in the trenches and on the battlefield while serving on the Western Front. His art provided an insight into the personal and humanizing aspects of the Great War. In addition to Schubert’s artwork, Dr. Guenther also guided the students through the propaganda and literature that was produced in the United States once America entered the war in 1917.

UHD student visit Printing Museum

UHD Students Hear Congressman John Lewis Speak

On Sunday, February 18, 2015, University of Houston-Downtown students enrolled in the “History of the Civil Rights Movement," a course taught by first-year lecturer Dr. Jonathan Chism, received free tickets (complimentary of the Houston Public Library) to hear Congressman John Lewis speak at the Wortham Center's Cullen Theater. Lewis, a veteran and influential civil rights icon, is the only living civil rights activist who spoke at the March on Washington in 1963 with King and other notable figures. During his presentation, Lewis discussed his new graphic novel, March, which tells and depicts his life story as a civil rights activist. Beyond receiving extra credit for attending the event, students in Dr. Chism’s class were honored to seize the opportunity to hear and to meet Lewis as well as obtain an autographed copy of his novel.

Faculty News

Jeffrey Parker's lecture, “Sex Work at a Crossroads: The Politics of Race, Migration, and Prostitution in Panama

Photograph of Jeffery Parker, visiting Assistant Professor On February 19, 2015, Dr. Parker (Visiting Associate Professor of History) presented his analysis of U.S. and Panamanian relations during the construction of the canal. His talk focused on how the liberal laws under the Panamanian government facilitated prostitution, which flourished because of the concentration of male construction workers from the United States and the greater Caribbean. Dr. Parker's research highlights the limits of imperial power at a global crossroads as migrant people constantly shaped the isthmian nightlife as well as discourses of sexual deviancy.

Dr. Chism's lecture, "The Saints Go Marching: The Church of God in Christ and the Civil Rights Movement in Memphis, Tennessee, 1954-1968

On March 12, 2015, Dr. Chism (Lecturer in History) presented his lecture on the Church of God in Christ’s (COGIC) engagement in the Civil Rights Movement in Memphis, Tennessee, 1954-1968. His central argument is that Memphis COGIC members were not divorced from the Memphis civil rights movement, but endeavored to combat racial injustice and inequality through political action, nonviolent protest, and spiritual teaching.

David Ryden's lecture, “The Society of West India Planters and Merchants in the Age of Emancipation, ca. 1816–1835”

On February 26, 2015, Dr. Ryden (Professor of History) presented his latest research on the London Society of West India Planters and Merchants. This body of slaveholders lobbied the British government for protectionism and for compensated emancipation, where the slave owners would be paid for the freeing of their slaves. His earlier findings on this organization’s structure and tactics were published in West Indian Slavery and British Abolition, 1783-1807 (Cambridge University Press, 2009).

Dr. Gillette's Coauthored Book, Latin Eugenics in Comparative Perspective is Published

Dr. Aaron Gillette’s new coauthored book, Latin Eugenics in Comparative Perspective (Bloomsbury Press) is now in print and available in bookstores. This books “offers a comparative, nuanced approach to eugenics as a scientific program as well as a cultural and political program.”

El Paso's Muckracker: The Life of Owen Payne White by UHD professor Garna L. Christian

Front cover of Dr. Garna Christian's book, El Paso's Muckraker: The Life of Owen Payne WhiteRetired UHD history faculty, Dr. Garna L. Christian writes this long overdue biography of this over looked writer of history and journalism. Owen Payne White was a muckraking newspaperman who exposed corruption, crime, and hypocrisy which earned national recognitions as well as death threats. White was also a historian of the Old West and published eight books on this subject bringing local history to a national stage. His knowledge of Mexico allowed him to cover the aftermath of the Mexican Revolution. Through it all, White never lost his sardonic wit, his scrupulous directness, or his intellectual and political independence.

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