Katherine E Sorrels
Associate Professor of History
Affiliate Faculty, Judaic Studies
Katherine Sorrels is an Associate Professor of History, Affiliate Faculty in Judaic Studies, and Chair of the Taft Health Humanities Research Group at the University of Cincinnati. Her research interests are in modern European and North American Jewish history, the history of medicine, and disability history. She is also involved in a number of digital and public humanities projects. She teaches on Migration and the Refugee Experience, Immigration in World History, Nazi Germany and the Holocaust, Nazi Medicine, Scientific Racism, Holocaust History and New Media, Modern European Historiography, History of Health and Medicine, and Disability History.
Her current book project is On the Spectrum: Jewish Refugees from Nazi Austria and the Politics of Disability in the Britain and North America. Her focus is on the Camphill movement, an international network of intentional communities for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities that was founded in Scotland during WWII by Austrian Jewish refugees. The key figures in the history of the autism diagnosis, on both sides of the Atlantic, were Austrians and through Camphill, she reconstructs the larger story of how Austrian refugees transformed British and North American approaches to disability. Her research is based on archival work and oral histories in Austria, Britain, the United States, and Canada. She was interviewed on this project for two Botstiber Foundation podcasts, which can be found here: Episode 1; Episode 2.
On the Spectrum extends work on antisemitism, scientific racism, and internationalism in 20th century Central and Eastern European Jewish history that she explored in her first book, Cosmopolitan Outsiders: Imperial Inclusion, National Exclusion, and the Pan-European Idea, 1900-1930 (Palgrave Macmillan, 2016). She has also published on Yiddish-speaking Eastern European Jewry, Medical and Digital Humanities, and disability history and theory. This includes articles and the two forthcoming co-edited volumes Disability in German-Speaking Europe: History, Memory, and Culture (Camden House, forthcoming June, 2022) and Ohio under COVID: Lessons from America's Heartland in Crisis (under contract with the University of Michigan Press). When Sorrels is not working, she is usually gardening, listening to gardening podcasts, reading gardening books, and watching gardening shows. Her enthusiasm sometimes outpaces her talent (there have been casualties) but she continues to dig in the dirt.
Katherine Sorrels CV
Ph.D.: University of Pittsburgh 2009 (History; Concentrations: Jewish History, Modern Europe, History of Ideas)
M.A.: Central European University Budapest, 2000 (History)
B.A.: SUNY Binghamton 1998 (History)
08-2021 -05-2022 Charles Phelps Taft Research Center, University of Cincinnati, Academic Year Writing Fellowship
08-2021 TOME Award (Toward an Open Access Monograph Ecosystem)
05-2021 -05-2024 A&S Dean's Office Dean's Innovation Award
05-2020 -07-2020 National Endowment for the Humanities, Summer Stipend
01-2020 -05-2020 Herbert D. Katz Center for Advanced Judaic Studies, Ivan and Nina Ross Family Fellowship
09-2019 -12-2019 German Academic Exchange Service Conference Grant
01-2019 -05-2019 Charles Phelps Taft Research Center, University of Cincinnati, Faculty Release Fellowship
09-2018 -08-2019 Dietrich W. Botstiber Foundation, Research Grant
05-2017 -04-2018 University Research Council, University of Cincinnati URC Interdisciplinary Award
09-2013 -05-2014 Charles Phelps Taft Research Center, University of Cincinnati, Academic Year Writing Fellowship
06-2012 -08-2012 Taft Research Center, Summer Research Fellowship
2019 Award for Innovative Uses of Technology in Teaching, University of Cincinnati All-University Faculty Awards
2020 Public Humanities Award, Charles Phelps Taft Research Center
2021 Gene Lewis Faculty Teaching Prize, Department of History, University of Cincinnati