Dr. James P. Cousins
Director of Undergraduate Studies and Faculty Specialist
Ph.D., University of Kentucky (2010)
History of Education; Historical Methodology; History Education
Office: (269) 387-5382
4436 Friedmann Hall
Department of History
Western Michigan University
1903 W Michigan Ave
Kalamazoo, MI 49008-5334
Teaching and Advising
I teach undergraduate courses in the history of education, historical research methods, and secondary history education. As the department's Director of Undergraduate Studies, I oversee the advising of students with majors and minors in History and Secondary History Education.
Research and Scholarship
My primary topical interests concern the socio-cultural evolution of education in antebellum America. I examine the informal processes, institutions, structures, systems, and contexts that defined public intellect. My most recent publications explore long-held assumptions regarding America's earliest colleges and universities. In an article titled "Lexington's 'Established Order' and the Creation of Transylvania University" I seek to establish new concept of schooling that sees higher education as both a social mirror and rhetorical center of communal identity. In a work titled "Kentucky's 'Free and Easy Generation' in the War of 1812" I examine the causal connections between patriotic rhetoric, capitalism, and mythologized frontier aggression. I was recently named the 2012 "Scholar-in-Residence" of Transylvania University (Lexington, Kentucky). The award is in support of archival research for my first book, a biography of Horace Holley who served as university president from 1818 to 1827.