John Dunn is a historian of modern Europe, with a specialization in contemporary France and decolonization. He is currently working on a book manuscript based on his Ph.D. dissertation, “One-Hundred Million No Longer: Learning to be French in the Era of Decolonization, 1944-1992.” This project examines the ways in which the French state used the educational system to reconstruct France’s national identity as the colonial empire slipped away. It argues that, in the wake of colonial independence, history curricula adopted deterministic narratives of decolonization and modernization that allowed France’s youngest citizens to compartmentalize the events of the previous decades and to resurrect French grandeur in new guises. These discourses gradually replaced earlier narratives that persuaded pupils to see themselves as imperial citizens.
In addition to his research project, Dr. Dunn maintains long-standing interests in comparative imperialism, historical memory, and European multiculturalism (especially concerning Islam and people of color). He has a strong scholarly and practical investment in History pedagogy and in student-centered pedagogical reform.
John Dunn received his B.A. in History and Political Science from the University of Richmond and his Ph.D. in History from Emory University. While at Emory, he received an Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Graduate Teaching Fellowship and the Joseph J. Mathews Fellowship. Prior to his arrival at Michigan State, Professor Dunn taught courses at Emory University, Clark Atlanta University, and Clayton State University. At MSU, he teaches courses in both the History program and in the Integrative Studies in Social Science (ISS) program.
Recent and Upcoming Courses
HST 140. World History to 1500 (Spring 2016)
HST 150. World History since 1500 (Fall 2015)
ISS 215. Social Differentiation and Inequality. Topic: “Race, Ethnicity and Gender in Postwar Europe” (Fall 2014)
ISS 215 (Honors). Social Differentiation and Inequality. Topic: “Identity, Culture, and Conformity in Postwar Europe” (Fall 2015)
ISS 225. Power, Authority, and Exchange. Topic: “Empires: Past and Present” (Spring 2015 and Spring 2016)
ISS 325. War and Revolution. Topic: “The Dynamics of Violence” (Spring 2015)