Skip Navigation

Brockport / History / Faculty / Dr. James Spiller

History Faculty

Dr. James Spillerspiller

Asst Provost Research & Scholarship/ Dean Graduate School

Office: Morgan II 2110
Phone: 585.395.5471


  • Modern American History, Cultural History


  • Phd University of Wisconsin - Madison, August 1999 - American History
  • BA Rutgers University - December, 1989

Awards and Honors

  •  SUNY Chancellor's Award for Excellence in Teaching, 2004.
  • Research Grants from the Presidential Library Foundations of George H.W. Bush (2003); Lyndon B. Johnson (2002); and Gerald R. Ford (1997).
  • Smithsonian Institution Predoctoral Fellowship, 1996-1997. 
  • History of Science Society's Schuman Prize, 1996. 
  • Jacob Javits Fellow, 1991-1996. 

Courses Taught

  • Modern American History Survey
  • History of Science and Technology in America
  • Modern American Dream: Economics and U.S. Society
  • Undergraduate Research Methods
  • Modern American Cultural History
  • American Environmental History
  • America since 1929
  • Graduate Reading Seminar in Modern American History


  • "International Science in Antarctica," in David N. Livingstone and Ronald L. Numbers eds., Modern Science in National and International Context. (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, forthcoming.)
  • "Imagining American Science and Technology," in T. Gregory Garvey and Anna Maslenikova eds., American Studies Reader (St. Petersberg, 2006).
  • "Radiant Cuisine: The Commercial Fate of Food Irradiation in the United States," Technology and Culture, October 2004.
  • "This is War! : Network Radio and World War II Propaganda in America" - in review by Journal of Radio Studies, June 2004.
  • "Re-Imagining U.S. Antarctic Research as a Defining Endeavor of a Deserving World Leader, 1957-1991," Public Understanding of Science, January 2004.

Conferences and Presentations

  • "Focusing With Foggy Lenses: The Importance and Limitations of Historical Inquiry," Keynote Lecture, Strong Museum, Rochester, NY, March 2009.
  • "Outer Space, Antarctica and Changing Sentiments about American Exploration," Organization of American Historians Conference, March 2008.
  • "The Greatest Legacy of the IGY: Antarctic Science as a Force for Peaceful Internationalism," The International geophysical Year: A 50-Year Retrospective (part of the IUGG Conference), July 2007.
  • "Documenting Science and Technology in the Digital Age," Mid-Atlantic Regional Archives Conference, April 2005
  • "The Space Frontier and the Shifting Terrain of American National Identity," Organization of American Historians Annual Meeting, April 2005.

Current Projects

  • Dr. Spiller is working on a manuscript on the cultural politics of, federally-funded scientific research and technology projects in post-World War II America.



Last Updated 2/25/15


History major Gabrielle Brannigan received a scholarship to enter the MA program in Social Studies and Special Education at the University of Rochester's Warner School of Education.

Dr. Takashi Nishiyama has published a book, Engineering War and Peace in Modern Japan, 1868-1964 (Johns Hopkins University Press, 2014).

Dr. Takashi Nishiyama was interviewed by Mainichi, a major national newspaper in Japan, for the Oct. 3, 2014, issue.

The department hosted an NEH Workshop, Rochester Reform Trail, for K-12 teachers in July 2014.

History major Amy Freeman has published an article on the Eastman Dental Dispensary in the Democrat and Chronicle.

Dr. Takashi Nishiyama was interviewed by Yomuiri, a major national newspaper in Japan.

Dr. Ken O'Brien has been named a SUNY Provost Fellow for the 2013-2014 year.

Dr. Bruce Leslie has been named a SUNY Distinguished Service Professor.


The Malik Lecture will be held on Thursday, February 12, 2015, at 7 pm at the Tower Fine Arts Center Mainstage.

The Robert Marcus Lecture will be held on Wednesday, April 15, 2015, at 7:30 pm in the lecture hall (room 104) of the Liberal Arts Building.