History Dept hosts Dr. April Merleaux

On February 1st, the Department of History along with the First Year Experience hosted Dr. April Merleaux of Florida International University. Dr. Merleaux’s research focuses on the 20th century United States in international context. She studies the intersections between cultural studies and political economy, and she is particularly interested in race, environment, and power. Dr. Merleaux is the author of Sugar and Civilization: American Empire and the Cultural Politics of Sweetness. The book tells the story of sugar from the Spanish American War through the New Deal of the 1930s, describing how workers and consumers in multiple locations came to eat so much sugar. The cultural logic connecting imperial, trade, and immigration policies was the same one that facilitated new habits of sugar consumption within the United States and its territories. During her visit to the College of Charleston, Dr. Merleaux gave two talks, one for faculty and staff entitled, “Sustainability and the Humanities, ” and one for students called, “An Environmental History of the Sugar Tariff,” pictured below.





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