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Kathryn Wilson

Associate Professor    

M.A. and Ph.D. in Folklore and Folklife from the University of Pennsylvania; B.A. in History at Georgetown University


Kate Wilson has an M.A. and Ph.D. in Folklore and Folklife from the University of Pennsylvania, and received her B.A. in History at Georgetown University. She began her public history career at The Balch Institute for Ethnic Studies in 1997, where she served as Director of Education and Outreach and led a series of projects documenting the new immigrant experience in Philadelphia . She has over ten-years’ experience in public history, specifically in directing community-oriented, K-12 education, and online projects. After 2000 she worked as director of education and interpretation at the Historical Society of Pennsylvania, overseeing HSP’s publication, programming, education, website, and community history efforts, before joining the faculty at GSU in 2008.

Her research interests lie in immigration/ethnic studies, public history, American cultural history, gender studies, and material culture. She has published on nineteenth-century women’s clothing practices, on patterns of ethnicity in the mid-Atlantic, and on presenting ethnic cultures in public. Her current research focuses on the representation of the immigrant experience in public history contexts and the impact of ethnic and immigrant communities on the urban cultural landscape. Her book, Ethnic Renewal: Space, Place, and Struggle in Philadelphia’s Chinatown, will be published by Temple University Press in spring 2015.

At GSU Kate teaches HIST 2110 US Survey, HIST 4225 Immigrants in America, HIST 7040 Issues & Interpretations in Public History, HIST 8740 Material Culture, HIST 8750 Public History Education and Planning Practice, and HIST 8800 Directed Study in Public History. She is the primary advisor for all MHP students in the Public History track. She is also directing oral history documentation for the GSU library’s digital collection, “Planning Atlanta: A New City in the Making, 1930s – 1990s,” which can be viewed at: