Blain Roberts


Office: Social Sciences 118Dr. Blain Roberts


Office phone: 278-8677

Ph.D. - University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
MA - University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
M. Litt. - University of St. Andrews
BA - Princeton University

Research/Teaching Interests:

20th Century U.S.; U.S. Women's and Gender History; U.S. Cultural History; the American South; Memory; Historical Tourism


Fall 2020 Sabbatical


Select Publications:


Denmark Vesey’s Garden: Slavery and Memory in the Cradle of the Confederacy, The New Press, March 2018, [co-authored with Ethan J. Kytle].

Pageants, Parlors, and Pretty Women: Race and Beauty in the Twentieth-Century South, University of North Carolina Press, 2014.
2014 Publishers Weekly Notable African American Title
2015 Southern Association for Women Historians Willie Lee Rose Book Prize

Articles and Book Chapters: 

“The Grove of Gladness” and “When Freedom Came to Charleston,” in Edward L. Widmer, ed., The New York Times Disunion: A History of the Civil War (Oxford University Press, 2016) [co-authored with Ethan J. Kytle].

"Uncovering the Confederacy of the Mind, Or How I Became a Belle of the Ball in Denmark Vesey's Church," Southern Cultures 19 (Fall 2013): 6-25.

"Looking the Thing in the Face: Slavery, Race, and the Commemorative Landscape of Race in Charleston, South Carolina, 1865-2010," Journal of Southern History 78 (August 2012): 639-684. [co-authored with Ethan J. Kytle]

"'Is It Okay to Talk about Slaves?': Segregating the Past in Historic Charleston," in Karen L. Cox, ed., Destination Dixie: Tourism and Southern History (University Press of Florida, 2012). [co-authored with Ethan J. Kytle] 

"A New Cure for Brightleaf Tobacco: The Origins of the Tobacco Queen during the Great Depression, Southern Cultures 12 (Summer 2006): 30-52. 

Op-Ed Essays:

New York Times:
“America Needs a National Slavery Monument,” Sunday Review, December 6, 2015.
“Birth of a Freedom Anthem,” Sunday Review, March 14, 2015.
“The Dust Bowl Returns,” February 10, 2014.
“The Miss America Pageant Still Sends the Wrong Message,” Room for Debate, September 13, 2013. 
“The Ugly Side of the Southern Belle,” January 16, 2013.
"When the South Was the Most Progressive Region in America,” January 17, 2018.

“Take Down the Confederate Flags, But Not the Monuments,”June 25, 2015.
Fresno Bee:
“Unsure about Confederate Statues? Ask Yourself if You Support White Supremacy,” August 18, 2017.
“Donald Trump is Dylann Roof’s President,” Fresno Bee, December 2, 2016.

Courses Offered:

U.S History, 1877 to the Present
U.S. Women's History
U.S. Cultural History, 1877 to the Present
History and Women's Autobiography
Advanced Historical Research and Writing

Introduction to Graduate Writing and Historiography
The Civil Rights Movement
Memory and Southern History