Bruce J. Dierenfield

Bruce J. Dierenfield

Bruce Dierenfield is a professor of American history, the director of the All-College Honors Program, and the former coordinator of the African American Experience program at Canisius College. He has been recognized as a Peter Canisius Distinguished Professor and has received the college's Martin Luther King Jr. Award, its DiGamma Award for exceptional service to the institution, and its Kenneth L. Koessler Distinguished Faculty Award. He is the author of the prizewinning The Battle over School Prayer: How Engel v. Vitale Changed America (2007), The Civil Rights Movement (revised edition, 2008, with a 2nd edition in the works), and A History of African-American Leadership (3rd edition, 2012). Dierenfield is currently collaborating with David Gerber on a book about a U.S. Supreme Court case involving hearing disability and separation of church and state. In addition, he is researching a biographical study of the Rev. George W. Lee of Mississippi, the first civil rights martyr, who was assassinated in 1955 for his voter-registration campaign.

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  • A Look at Black Strategies against White Supremacy, Then and Now *
  • Separate and Unequal: Racial Oppression in America *
  • The Black Lives Matter Movement *
  • The Forward Together / Moral Monday Movement *
  • Enabling Rights: Disability and Religion before the U.S. Supreme Court
  • The Epic School Prayer Case of Engel v. Vitale (1962)
  • "The Most Hated Woman in America": Madalyn Murray O'Hair's Atheist Crusade Against Religion
  • Heroes and Heroines of the Civil Rights Movement *
  • New Perspectives on the Civil Rights Movement
  • Myths of the Civil Rights Movement *
  • An Overview of Church and State in America

Lectures marked with a * are offered as part of the OAH's initiative, Historians' Perspectives on the Rise of Donald Trump.