Caitlin Fitz Assistant Professor

Caitlin Fitz (Ph.D., Yale, 2010) is a historian of early America, in a broad and hemispheric sense. Her work explores early U.S. engagement with foreign communities and cultures, as well as the relationship between ordinary people and formal politics. Her first book, Our Sister Republics: The United States in an Age of American Revolutions, illuminates the wave of enthusiasm for Latin American independence that engulfed the United States during the early nineteenth century. Grounded in archival research in Portuguese, Spanish, French, and English, the book (published by W.W. Norton/Liveright in 2016) reveals how events in Spanish America and Brazil shaped popular understandings of race, revolution, and republicanism within the United States. Fitz has also written on the hemispheric dimensions of the War of 1812 (Journal of American History, 2015), U.S. citizens in insurgent Brazil (The Americas, 2008), Iroquois communities during the U.S. revolution (Journal of the Early Republic, 2008), and antislavery activists in Tennessee (Civil War History, 2006).

Fitz has written essays, reviews, and opinion pieces for the Wall Street Journal, the Atlantic, and the Los Angeles Times, and she has received fellowships from the Fulbright Foundation, the American Council of Learned Societies, and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. Her courses at Northwestern explore American history through 1865.

Publications

Our Sister Republics: The United States in an Age of American Revolutions (forthcoming, W.W. Norton/Liveright, July 2016).

“The Hemispheric Dimensions of Early U.S. Nationalism: The War of 1812, Its Aftermath, and Spanish American Independence,” Journal of American History 102.2  (September 2015), 356-379. 

“Suspected on Both Sides’: Little Abraham, Iroquois Neutrality, and the American Revolution,” Journal of the Early Republic 28.3 (Fall 2008), 299-335.

“A Stalwart Motor of Revolutions’: An American Merchant in Pernambuco, 1817-1825,” The Americas 65.1 (July 2008), 35-62. 

“The Tennessee Antislavery Movement and the Market Revolution, 1815-1835,” Civil War History 52.1 (March 2006), 5-40. 

Teaching Interests

  • Early America.
  • The United States Through 1865.
  • The Age of Revolution in Europe and the Americas.

Recent Awards and Honors

  • Faculty Fellowship, American Council of Learned Societies (2014-2015).
  • George Washington Egleston Historical Prize, Yale University  (for dissertation, 2011).