OAH Distinguished Lecturer Profile

Joanne Meyerowitz

Portrait of Joanne Meyerowitz

Joanne Meyerowitz is the Arthur Unobskey Professor of History and American Studies at Yale University. A past president of the OAH and a former editor of the Journal of American History, she is the author of How Sex Changed: A History of Transsexuality (2002) and the editor of Not June Cleaver: Women and Gender in Postwar America, 1945ā€“1960 (2004) and History and September 11th (2003). She is currently completing a book that examines U.S. involvement in campaigns to end global poverty in the 1970s and 1980s. It begins with the decline of modernization programs and ends with the rise of microcredit, and it shows how and why anti-poverty efforts increasingly focused on women.

Featured Lecture

OAH Lectures

This lecture recounts the checkered history of U.S. involvement in the campaigns against global poverty of the 1970s and 1980s. It focuses especially on the 1970sā€™ attempts to place anti-poverty efforts at the center of international development and on the reformulation of those efforts in the more conservative 1980s.
This lecture looks at the origins of the late 20th-century campaigns to empower impoverished women overseas. At the very moment that conservatives vilified poor women in the U.S. as welfare cheats, anti-poverty advocates positioned poor women overseas as selfless and hardworking.
This lecture addresses the changing profile of economic development in the late 20th century. It shows how and why development experts, policymakers, and international officials shifted their vision of economic assistance from the modernization projects funded in the 1960s to the microcredit programs that won support in the 1980s.