B.A. Oberlin College, High Honors in History, 2014
M. A. University of Mississippi, Curriculum & Instruction, 2017
M. A. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, History, 2019
Ian Gutgold is an intellectual and social historian of the nineteenth-century United States. He is particularly interested in the history of anti-slavery and the ways in which Black and White reformers imagined an American nation without human bondage. His dissertation, “‘To Think Just Like You Do’: Abolitionist Visions of Black Freedom,” traces the divergent ways that abolitionists Henry Highland Garnet and Maria Weston Chapman thought about the futures of liberated people in the three decades before the Civil War. Garnet, who escaped a Maryland plantation with his family as a child, constantly pointed to a positive vision of Black social, economic, and political independence. Chapman, in contrast, more often expressed her vision in negative terms: the excision of the “sin” of slavery from the American republic. By reconstructing the overlapping transatlantic networks that these two abolitionists participated in, Gutgold suggests the radically different ways that it was possible to imagine Black liberation and the enduring consequences of these distinct visions.
Some Notable Publications
“Black Destiny in the Minds of Philadelphia Sailmaker James Forten and Liberian Governor Jehudi Ashmun,” Pennsylvania History: A Journal of Mid-Atlantic Studies 89 (Fall 2022): 580-621.