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About Selena Sanderfer Doss

Research Interests
My research interests focus mainly on southern African Americans and Black Nationalism. I am currently pursuing research related to my dissertation, which examines the participation of black lower class southerners in movements supporting territorial separatism from the late eighteenth to the early twentieth century. For future research I plan to continue studying the experiences of black southerners and in particular investigate the emergence and legacy of all black towns and communities.
Teaching Interests
I enjoy teaching courses on the history of the African Diaspora and American history. I have taught courses in African history, American history and Western Civilization as well as special topic courses in African American history, the Atlantic World and the history of slavery.


Present Associate Professor, Western Kentucky University Department of History

Curriculum Vitae

Research Interests


2019 John Hope Franklin Research Center Travel Grant
Duke University
2018 Quick Turnaround Grant
Western Kentucky University
2018 Research Grant
Indiana Academy of Social Science
2013 Research and Creative Activities Program Grant
Western Kentucky University
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Professional Service and Affiliations

2020 - Present Board of Directors, Kentucky Humanities Council
2020 - Present Executive Secretary, The Indiana Academy of Social Sciences
2019 - Present Membership Committee, Southern Historical Association
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Honors and Awards

  • Short Term Fellowship, Mellon Scholars Program in African American History at the Library Company of Philadelphia 2014
  • George C. Roberts Award for Best Article, Indiana Academy of Social Science, 2017
  • Long-term Fellowship, The Lapidus Center for the Historical Analysis of Transatlantic Slavery, Schomburg Center for Research and Black Culture, New York Public Library, New York, NY, January-June 2020
  • Lord Baltimore Fellowship, Maryland Historical Society, Baltimore, MD, May 2018
  • One Month Faculty Fellowship, Gilder Lehrman Center for the Study of Slavery, Resistance, and Abolition, New Haven, CT, January 2018


  • HIST 615 Seminar in Non-Western History – Readings in African History
  • HIST 102 – World History since 1500
  • HIST 120 – Western Civilization since 1648
  • HIST 240 – US History before 1865
  • HIAR 331 – History of African since 1500
  • HIST 359 – Blacks in American History after 1877
  • HIST 390 – Blacks in the American South
  • HIST 451/451G Diplomatic History of the U.S. since 1898
  • HIST 490/490G - Comparative Slavery
  • HIST 490/490G – African Americans in the Civil War and Reconstruction
  • HIST 490 – The Black Church
  • HIST 563 – The Atlantic World


2005 - 2010 PhD, Vanderbilt University ‐ History Department
2003 - 2005 Master of Arts, Vanderbilt University
1993 - 2003 Bachelor of Arts, Fisk University

Contact Information

1906 College Heights Blvd. #21086
Department of History
Western Kentucky University
Bowling Green, KY 42101-1086
Office Phone: (270) 745-3842