March 28, 1996
Vol. 15, No. 14

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    Directorship natural extension for Auslander

    For Leora Auslander, Associate Professor in History, being appointed Director of the new Center for Gender Studies is a natural extension of her scholarship. Auslander, who is a fellow at the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences at Stanford for the 1995-96 academic year, has long been interested in issues of gender in history, as illustrated by her current book in progress, The Everyday of Citizenship: France and Germany 1900-1935.

    "The legal foundations of citizenship in France and Germany are often contrasted. In Germany, citizenship has been hereditary. In France, you can acquire citizenship by applying, or by being born on French soil," Auslander said. "I'm interested in why that matters -- how different views of citizenship shape the status and experience of women and men. For instance, Germany gave women the vote in 1918; France, not until 1945. It's counterintuitive."

    Auslander's research, like that of most of the faculty members she anticipates will be involved in the center, often overlaps into the area of gender studies but is not limited to it. She is also at work on the book Good Taste and the Modern Nation: Consumption in Post-revolutionary England, the United States and France, a primer on why taste matters in the study of history. Her other works include Taste and Power: Furnishing Modern France, to be published this month by the University of California Press, and Difference des sexes et protection sociale (XIXe-XXe siecles), co-edited with Michelle Zancarini-Fournel, a study of how the state in England, France and the United States has shaped the gendering of the workplace.

    Auslander received her A.B. from the University of Michigan in 1979, her A.M from Harvard in 1982 and her Ph.D. from Brown in 1988. She joined the Chicago faculty as an Instructor in 1987. She was named Associate Professor in 1995.