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Thomas Balcerski

Associate Professor

Thomas Balcerski is a scholar of early American history. He holds a B.A. from Cornell University, an M.A. from SUNY Stony Brook, and a Ph.D. from Cornell University. He is author of Bosom Friends: The Intimate World of James Buchanan and William Rufus King (Oxford University Press, 2019).

Research Interests
  • Early American History
  • Manhood and Gender
  • U.S. Presidents and First Ladies
Of Note

Dr. Balcerski was featured on the C-SPAN series "Lectures in History" for his work on antebellum political culture.

Teaching Interests
  • African American History
  • American Popular Culture
  • Environmental History
  • U.S. Presidential History

Bosom Friends: The Intimate World of James Buchanan and William Rufus King. New York: Oxford University Press, 2019.

“‘A General Concurrence in the Propriety of the Repeal’: Male Friendship, Party, and Section in the Kansas-Nebraska Bill,” Civil War History 65, no. 2 (June 2019): 157-183.

“The Bachelor’s Mess: James Buchanan and the Domestic Politics of Doughfacery in Jacksonian America,” in The Worlds of James Buchanan and Thaddeus Stevens: Place, Personality, and Politics in the Civil War Era, eds. Michael J. Birkner, John Quist, and Randall Miller (Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 2019): 31-61.

“‘A Work of Friendship’: Nathaniel Hawthorne, Franklin Pierce, and the Politics of Enmity in the Civil War Era,” Journal of Social History 50, no. 4 (Summer 2017): 655-79.

“Beards, Bachelors, and Brides: The Surprisingly Spicy Politics of the Presidential Election of 1856,” Common-place: The Journal of Early American Life 16, no. 4 (Summer 2016)

History Department