Katherine Sorrels

Katherine E Sorrels

Associate Professor of History
Affiliate Faculty, Judaic Studies

McMicken Hall


A&S History - 0373

Professional Summary

My research interests are in modern European and Jewish history. More specifically, I work on Jewish internationalism, the history of medicine, and disability history in 19th and 20th-century German-speaking Europe. Courses I regularly teach include: Migration and the Refguee Experience in World History, Modern Germany, Nazi Germany and the Holocaust, Nazi Medicine, Holocaust History and New Media, and Modern European Historiography.


Ph.D., University of Pittsburgh 2009 (History; Concentrations: Jewish History, Modern Europe, History of Ideas)

M.A., Central European University Budapest, 2000 (Comparative European History)

B.A., SUNY Binghamton 1998 (History and German)

Research Support

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

01-2019 -05-2019 Charles Phelps Taft Research Center, Faculty Release Fellowship

09-2018 -08-2019 Dietrich W. Botstiber Foundation, Botstiber Institute for Austrian-American Studies Grant

05-01-2017 -04-30-2018 University Research Council, University of Cincinnati URC Interdisciplinary Award

09-2013 -05-2014 Charles Phelps Taft Research Center, Center Fellowship (Academic Year Research Leave)

06-18-2012 -08-04-2012 Taft Research Center, Summer Research Fellowship

Abbreviated Publications

Invited Publication

“Ethnicity as Evidence of Subversion: National Stereotypes and the Secret Police Investigations of Jews in Interwar Bessarabia”. transversal, Vol. 3, No. 2, 2002.

Peer Reviewed Publications

“Pan-Europe’s Cosmopolitan Outsiders,” Austrian History Yearbook, Vol. 46, April, 2015.

"Police Harassment and the Politicization of Jewish Youth in Interwar Bessarabia," East European Jewish Affairs 47 (1), 2017. http://www.tandfonline.com/eprint/Mb9h3Z8BMEhRWZ27ihqU/full


Cosmopolitan Outsiders: Imperial Inclusion, National Exclusion, and the Pan-European Idea, 1900-1930, Palgrave Macmillan, 2016. https://link.springer.com/book/10.1057/978-1-349-72062-0


Review of Unlearning Eugenics: Sexuality, Reproduction, and Disability in Post-Nazi Europe, by Dagmar Herzog. H-Diplo, Roundtable XX-47 (2019) https://hdiplo.org/to/RT20-47.

Review of Internationalism in the Age of Nationalism, by Glenda Sluga. Human Rights Quarterly 39, No. 1, 2017.

Review of Plumes: Ostrich Feathers, Jews, and a Lost World of Global Commerce, by Sarah Abrevaya Stein. Religious Studies Review, Vol. 36, No. 3, 2010.

Review of The Kuzari and the Shaping of Jewish Identity, 1167-1900, by Adam Shear. Religious Studies Review, Vol 36, No. 3, 2010.

Review of Beyond the Border: The German-Jewish Legacy Abroad, by Steven Aschheim. Religious Studies Review, Vol. 35, No. 1, 2009.

Review of Die Rumänisierung der Bukowina, by Mariana Hausleitner. transversal, Vol. 7, No. 1, 2006.


Invited Presentations

(04-2020. ) Disability, Jewishness, and Belonging from Nazi Vienna to Postwar Britain .Herbert D. Katz Center for Advanced Judaic Studies, University of Philadelphia.

(01-2018. ) Jewish Refugees from Nazi Austria and the Politics of Disability in the English-speaking World .National Library of Medicine, NIH, Washington, DC.

(04-2016. ) "Eurafrica and the Austrian Imperial Legacy" .Duke University, Durham, NC. Workshop. .

(04-2015. ) "Can Social Darwinism be a Basis for Anti-Racism? Views from Vienna, 1911" .Symposium on the First International Races Congress, London 1911, Rutgers University.

(11-2013. ) “The Aristocracy of the Future: A Catholic-Jewish Utopia” . Open History Seminar, Hebrew Union College, Cincinnati, OH.

(04-2012. ) “The Evolution of Europe: social Darwinism and the ideal of integration in fin de siècle Austria” .German Studies , University of Cincinnati.

(07-2009. ) Jewish Ideas of Europe: Responses to Ethnonationalism in the Habsburg Empire .Negotiating Europe: Jewish and Non-Jewish Spaces , Friedrich-Schiller-Universität Jena.

(05-2009. ) “Antisemitism as a Context for the Idea of Europe.” .Junior Scholars Conference on the Future of German Jewish History, Organized by the Leo Baeck Institute in Germany, the German Historical Institute in Washington and the Institute for European Studies at Berkeley, Washington, D.C..

(03-2007. ) “Habsburg Jews and the Idea of Europe.” .European Colloquium, University of Pittsburgh.

Paper Presentations

(05-2020. ) Asperger’s Jewish Colleagues and the Legacy of German Disability Theory .Ann Arbor, MI.

(04-2020. ) “Home as a Space of Mutual Reliance for Abled and Disabled Jewish Refugees.” .Philadelphia, PA.

(01-2019. ) On the Spectrum: Jewish Refugees from Nazi Austria and the Politics of Disability .Chicago, IL.

(12-2018. ) The International Camphill Movement as a Central European Jewish Subculture .Boston, MA.

(11-2018. ) German Approaches to Disability in 20th Century America .Seattle, WA.

(05-2018. ) Villagers: Countercultural Communities and a New Approach to Disability in mid-twentieth-century Europe .Los Angeles, CA.

(12-2017. ) Jewish Refugees from Central Europe and the Politics of Special Education in the English-speaking World, 1938-1966 .Boston, MA.

(07-2017. ) German Folk Medicine in a Global Context .Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

(05-2017. ) Nazis, Jews, and the Politics of Homeopathy in the mid 20th Century .Nashville, TN.

(09-2014. ) “The Diverse Political Uses of Eugenics” .Kalamazoo, MI.

(02-2014. ) “An Aristocracy of Spirit, not Blood: Reimagining Habsburg Aristocracy after the First World War” .University of Texas, Austin.

(06-2013. ) "Revolutionary Pacifism and European Unity" .Amsterdam.

(04-2013. ) "Austrian Jewish Pacifism and the Ideal of European Unity in the first half of the Twentieth Century" .New York City.

(04-2012. ) "Pan-Europe's Cosmopolitan Outsiders" .Long Beach, CA.

(10-2010. ) “Habsburg Utopias and Atlantic Unity: Central European Jewish Cosmopolitanism during the Cold War.” .University of Texas at Austin.

(08-2009. ) “Oscar Jaszi, the Danubian Federation, and the Cold War.” .The Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

(10-2006. ) “Alfred Fried and the Organization of Europe: The pre-WWI roots of the Pan-European Idea.” .Pittsburgh, PA.

(11-2005. ) “The Threat of the Powerless: Police Conspiracy Theories and Jewish Youth in Interwar Bessarabia.” .Salt Lake City.

(07-2005. ) “Romanian Elite Discourse on European Culture: Constantin Noica’s “Structura Culturii Noastre” during and after Socialism.” .Berlin.

(06-2002. ) “Romanian Nationalist Concepts of the Jews in Interwar Bessarabia.” .Iasi, Romania.

(10-2001. ) “’Deutsch, Treu, Glaubensstark:' Nationalism and the Transylvanian Saxon Women’s Movement to Reform Schooling for Girls, 1894-1914.” .University of Salford.

Honors and Awards

2018 -2019 Award for Innovative Uses of Technology in Teaching, University of Cincinnati All-University Faculty Awards