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Brockport / History / Faculty / Angela Thompsell

History Faculty

Anne Macphearson august 2010

Dr. Angela Thompsell

Office: 329 Liberal Arts Building
Phone: 585.395.5074


  • Modern Britain, British Empire, and African History 


  • PhD University of Michigan, 2009 – History   
  • BA (with Highest Honors), University of Florida, 2001 – History
  • BS  (with Honors), University of Florida, 2001 – Zoology

Awards and Honors 

  • UUP/NYS Dr. Nuala McGann Drescher Affirmative Action / Diversity Leave Award, 2014
  • Pre-Tenure Grants Development Award, College at Brockport, 2011
  • Presidential Management Finalist, (declined), 2009                                     
  • Mellon British History Seminar at Columbia University, 2007
  • University of Michigan, Institute for Research on Women and Gender, 2006-2007

Courses Taught

  • World History, 1500-
  • Modern Imperial Britain
  • Modern Africa
  • Safari Africa: Western myths of Africa
  • Imperialism (graduate seminar)
  • Colonialism in the Congo (research seminar)

Public History


Book Reviews
  • Review of Imperial Justice: Africans in Empire's Court by Bonny Ibhawoh, Journal of Colonialism and Colonial History 16.1(Spring 2015).
  • Review of Conservation Song: A History of Peasant-State Relations and the Environment in Malawi, 1860-2000 by Wapulumuka Mulwafu, H-Environment, Jan. 2012.
  • Review of Africa, Empire, and Globalisation: Essays in Honor of A.G. Hopkins, edited by Toyin Falola and Emily Brownell, and A.G. Hopkins, H-Empire, Jan. 2012.
  • Review of Stanley: the Impossible Life of Africa’s Greatest Explorer by Tim Jeal, Journal of British Studies 48(July 2009): 787-9.
Other Publications
  • "Hunting," World Book Encyclopedia (2013)
  • “On the Job Market as a Visiting Instructor,” The Chronicle of Higher Education, December 14, 2010.

Conferences and Presentations

  • "Uncomfortably 'At Home' with the Empire's Heroes: The Spatial Dynamics of Masculinity," Masculinities on the British Fringe, University of Chicago, April 2015.
  • "The Expert Knowledge of Frederick Courteney Selous," Britain and the World Conference, British Scholar Society, March 2013.
  • "On Holiday in 'Wild' Africa," North American Victorian Studies Association Annual Meeting, Nov. 2011.
  • “Nothing but Cold Meat and Weak Tea: roughing it in British Colonial Africa,” Food and Drink: their Social, Political and Cultural Histories, University of Central Lancashire International Conference, June 2011.
  • “Imperial Taxidermy: International Conservation and the African Landscape,” American Historical Association Annual Meeting, Jan. 2011. (panel organizer)
  • Discussant and Panel Organizer, International, International, or Imperial: Constructions of British Culture Through Leisure, North American Conference on British Studies Annual Conference, Nov. 2010.
  • “Where ‘unprincipled character is laid bare in all its naked ugliness’: African Big Game Hunting and the Assessment of a Nation’s Worth,” North East Conference on British Studies Annual Meeting, Boston College, Nov. 2008.
  • “The Adventurer at Home: Living a Frontier Life in the Metropole,” North American Conference on British Studies Annual Conference, Oct. 2008.
  • Discussant for Nancy Hunt, “An Acoustic Register, Tenacious Images, and Congolese Scenes of Rape and Repetition,” Topographies of War and Registers of Violence in Cold war, post-1989 & post-9/11 Africas, University of Michigan, April 2008.
  • “Nimrods and Amazons: British Big Game Hunters in fin-de-siècle Africa,” Doing Gender History: Methods and Models, Women’s History Association of Ireland Annual Meeting, Centre for Research on Women and Gender, Trinity College, Dublin, Ireland, April 2005.
  • “True Hunters and Real Men: Big Game Hunting, Masculinity and Authority in Late Victorian Britain.” Culture/Politics Conference, Center for British Studies, University of California at Berkeley, Jan. 2004.

Current Projects

     As the African History Expert for, I publish several short articles a month on African history and society. My goal is to provide short, accessible histories to a broad general public that are informed by the latest scholarship. I love teaching, and I want to make a part of what I do in the classroom available to anyone. Recent topics include, the impacts of desertification in Africa, the decolonization of Africa, African women activists, the assassination of Patrice Lumumba, the Biafran and Kagera Wars, World War I in Africa, and the Mau Mau uprising, and I am looking to write a series of articles on Boko Haram, al Shabab, and the rise of Islamic extremism in Africa.

     In terms of scholarship, I am reconsidering the types of masculinity that contemporaries associated with mid- to late-Victorian explorers and imperial heroes.

Last Updated 6/2/15


Congratulations to Dr. Jose R. Torre on winning the Chancellor's Award for Excellence in Teaching!

History major Michael Zagari has been accepted into the Duquesne University School of Law this coming fall on a full academic scholarship! During his time at Brockport, Mike has played on the NCAA men’s ice hockey team and has won the Jack Crandall and Robert Griswold History Department Awards.

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.

History professor Jose R. Torre to direct NEH Landmarks Workshop for K-12 teachers. The Rochester Reform Trail explores Rochester’s nationally important antebellum reform history. This July, 72 K-12 teachers from as far away as California, Florida and Oregon will visit Rochester and learn why national figures like Frederick Douglass and Susan B. Anthony chose to live and work for social justice in Rochester, New York.


Robert Marcus Memorial Lecture, Thursday, 4/14/16, 7:30 pm, McCue Auditorium (LibArt 104 A/B), Dr. Raymond Craib (Cornell University), Title: "The Cry of the Renegade:  The politics and poetry of subversion in Santiago, Chile"