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Department of History

Erika A. Kuhlman, Ph.D.   U.S. History, Women's History, U.S. and the World

Our son Danil
(Our son Danil, my primary non-academic interest)

Dr. Erika Kuhlman joined the faculty at Idaho State University in August 2003.  She teaches courses in Women's History, U.S. Industrialization and Reform, U.S. and the World, and survey courses in U.S. History.  Professor Kuhlman  received her Ph.D. in American Studies from Washington State University, where she conducted research on the early twentieth-century American peace movement that resulted in her first book Petticoats and White Feathers: Gender Conformity, Race, the Progressive Peace Movement, and the Debate Over War, 1895-1919 (Greenwood, 1997). Since then, she has researched and written on post-World War I reconciliation between the U.S. and Germany, emphasizing women's efforts at peace-making. Her book Reconstructing Patriarchy after the Great War: Women, Gender, and Postwar Reconciliation between Nations is published by Palgrave Macmillan (2008).  Her most recent article, “American Doughboys and German Fräuleins: Sexuality, Patriarchy, and Privilege in the American-Occupied Rhineland, 1918-1923,” was published in the Journal of Military History 71, no. 4 (October 2007): 1077-1106. She has also published a chapter titled “`We Women Can Build a Bridge’: Gender, Women Trans-nationals, and Reconciliation in the Aftermath of the Great War,” in  Alison S. Fell and Ingrid Sharp, eds. The Women's Movement in Wartime: International Perspectives 1914-1919 (London and New York: Palgrave Macmillan) in 2007.

Courses Taught at Idaho State University

History 118, U.S. History and Culture

The theme of History 118 is cultural change in American history. (Definition of culture: anything that isn’t nature. People and societies create cultures materially and ideologically.) In this class we will be examining how cultural trends become mainstream –popular—and how subcultures act against the mainstream to try and change it. In other words, culture is a source of social conflict that changes through time. What is mainstream culture? How can we define subculture? Who decides what is mainstream and what is not?  The following will serve as our working definition of popular culture: Popular culture refers to the products of mass media such as television, film, print, and recording, as well as fashion, fads, celebrations, and sports. Popular culture will be viewed aesthetically and historically; that is, within the social and cultural contexts within which the materials are produced, disseminated, and interpreted.

History 308,  Industrialization and Reform in the U.S., 1820-1932

History 308 explores the emergence of a modern, industrialized society and its many problems, including labor protest and the challenges of new ideas in the social, economic and intellectual realms. Industrialization, like all social change, was negotiated terrain: some American social and political leaders decided to pursue industrialization, but their pursuit of it did not go unchallenged by industrialization's detractors. The course will be broken up into four related themes: the process of industrialization, responses to industrialization (including reform, immigration, and consumerism), cultural responses (art, literature, music, film) to industrialization, and current trends in the U.S. and our region. The historiography of each of these themes will also be discussed.

History 418/518, U.S. History for Teachers

History 418/518 is a U.S. history survey designed for prospective or current Idaho teachers. The course utilizes the Idaho Department of Education’s Standards for Teaching U.S. History in Public Schools. History 418/518 will be run primarily as a workshop and as such it is largely self-directed. The objective is to allow students to prepare a course that they will teach when they are employed in a school district. To that end, students will develop lesson plans and exams that they will include in their teaching portfolios.

History 439, Women in History

This course provides a broad overview of women’s experiences in history, from pre-history to the present, with focus on the modern world. We will especially explore women’s changing roles in societies and the basic literature on women’s historiography. We will ponder questions such as: has women’s status generally improved or deteriorated over time? What strategies has the women’s rights movement deployed to improve women’s status in societies? What role has religion played in women’s lives? Have women had a common experience, despite differences of place, time, class, and race? This course is designed to help you develop your skills in critical thinking, reading, writing, oral presentation, and library research.



Petticoats and White Feathers: Gender Conformity, Race, the Progressive Peace Movement, and the Debate Over War, 1895-1919 . Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1997.

A to Z of Women in World History. New York: Facts on File, Inc., August 2002.


“`Women’s Ways in War’: The Feminist Pacifism of the New York City Woman’s Peace Party,” Frontiers: A Journal of Women Studies vol. 18, no.1 (Spring, 1997): 80-92.

“Four Lights,” and “Peace and Freedom,” Women’s Periodicals in the United States: Political and Social Issues eds. Endres and Lueck (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1996): 108-114; 274-280.

“On the Move, On Their Own: Finnish American Women’s Experiences in Red Lodge, Montana,” Siirtolaisuus/Migration 1 (1991): 14-20. 

“`Greetings From This Coal Village!’: Red Lodge, Montana’s Finnish Immigrants, 1904-1939,” Montana: The Magazine of Western History (Spring 1990): 32-45.

University and Community Service

* I.S.U. Faculty Advisor, Phi Alpha Theta, History Student Honors Organization, 2004-present

* I.S.U. Faculty Advisor, Idaho State University Mortar Board chapter, October 2003-present

* Commissioner, Historic Preservation Commission, City of Pocatello, 2004-present

* Member, Pocatello Community Gardening Project, 2005-present