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Associate Professor
Phone: (585) 395-5697
E-Mail: jspiller@brockport.edu
Office: Liberal Arts Building 314


  • Modern United States History—Culture
  • Politics
  • Environment
  • Cold War
  • Science and Technology


  • Phd University of Wisconsin - Madison
  • BA Rutgers University - December

Awards and Honors

  • American Council on Education Fellow, 2016-17.
  • 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 Research Fellowship, 1996-1997.
  • History of Science Society's Schuman Prize, 1996.
  • Jacob Javits Fellow, 1991-1996.

Courses Taught

  • Modern American History
  • 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
  • Public History
  • Graduate Reading Seminar in Modern U.S. History
  • Antarctica and the Global Environment- A Study Abroad Experience

Select Publications

  • Frontiers for the American Century: Outer Space, Antarctica, and Cold War Nationalism (NY: Palgrave Macmillan, 2015).
  • "International Science in Antarctica," in Hugh Slotten ed., Modern Science in National, Transnational, and Global Context. (Cambridge University Press, 2019, Forthcoming).
  • "Nostalgia for the Right Stuff: Astronauts and Public Anxiety about a Changing Nation," in Michael Neufeld ed., Spacefarers: Images of Astronauts and Cosmonauts in the Heroic Era of Spaceflight (Smithsonian Scholarly Press, 2013).
  • "Scientific Exploration in Antarctica as an Analogy for American Spaceflight," Astropolitics: The International Journal of Space Politics & Policy (October 2014).
  • "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," 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.

Recent Scholarly and Public History Presentations

  • "Immigration Reform and the Politics of Security, Economics, and National Character," Strong Museum AP History Conference, March 2017.
  • "American Cold War Internationalism," National University of Ireland, Maynooth, March 2016.
  • "FDR and New Deal Politics," Livingston Great Depression Symposium, September 2015.
  • "Promoting American Spaceflight," Future in Space Operations Telecom Series, March 2015.
  • "Superpower Politics, Energy, and America’s Long Road through 9-11," Strong Museum AP History, March 2014.
  • "America’s High-Tech Arsenal of Democracy," Strong Museum AP History, March 2013.
  • "20th Century U.S. South Polar Exploration," American Studies Association, November 2012.
  • "Technologies of Exploration," Society for the History of Technology, November 2011.
  • "Changing Sentiments about American Exploration," Organization of American Historians, March 2008.
  • "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.

Last Updated 2/23/18

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