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Photo courtesy Linda Gordon

Florence Kelley Professor of History and University Professor of the Humanities, New York University

Marcus Bierich Distinguished Visitor - Class of Spring 2019

Historian Linda Gordon specializes in US social, political, and social policy of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, as well as histories of women and gender, right-wing populism, documentary photography, and Mexican Americans. She is currently the Florence Kelley Professor of History and University Professor of the Humanities at New York University.


Gordon’s works on gender and family issues include Woman’s Body, Woman’s Right, first published in 1976 and revised and republished in 2002 as The Moral Property of Women, which is widely considered to be the definitive history of birth control politics in the United States. She has also published historical studies of family violence (Heroes of Their Own Lives, 1988) and welfare (Pitied But Not Entitled, 1994). Two of her books, both large-scale histories focused on the American West, have won the prestigious Bancroft Prize for the best book in US history: The Great Arizona Orphan Abduction (1999) and Dorothea Lange: A Life Beyond Limits (2009). Gordon discovered Dorothea Lange’s photographs of Japanese-American internment during World War II—images long suppressed by the US Army—and published them for the first time in Impounded: Dorothea Lange and the Censored Images of Japanese American Internment (2006). Gordon’s most recent monograph is The Second Coming of the KKK: The Ku Klux Klan of the 1920s and the American Political Tradition (2017).


Gordon holds an MA and PhD in Russian history from Yale University.

Her website is

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