Loyola University Chicago

Department of History

Faculty and Staff Directory


Title/s:  Associate Professor
On leave, Fall 2020

Office #:  Crown Center 537

Phone: 773.508.2595


CV Link: Nickerson CV




Michelle Nickerson is an Associate Professor of History at Loyola University Chicago. She teaches courses on the history of women and gender, U.S. politics, social movements, cities and suburbs, and the Department's Ramonat Seminar

Nickerson developed an interest in the history of American social and political movements as an undergraduate at Rutgers University where her work at the Women’s Center immersed her in feminist activism and the history department introduced new worlds to her. After graduating from Yale with her Ph.D. and completing a fellowship at the Huntington Library, Nickerson taught for five years at University of Texas at Dallas before joining the faculty at Loyola in 2011.  In 2012 she published Mothers of Conservatism: Women and the Postwar Right (Princeton University Press),which documents the grassroots activism of conservative women in Cold War Los Angeles and explores the impact of that activism on the emerging American right.  This work led to her interest in regional and metropolitan political-economic development, which she examines in a volume of essays, co-edited with historian Darren Dochuk called Sunbelt Rising: The Politics of Place, Space, and Region (University of Pennsylvania Press).  Nickerson is currently studying the Camden 28, a Catholic anti-war group of the Vietnam era apprehended, brought to trial, and acquitted after raiding a draft board office in 1971.

YouTube Video

Nickerson lecture on "Mothers of Conservatism"

Twitter: @MicNick11

Research Interests

U.S. Women’s and Gender History, 20th Century Political and Urban History, American Conservatism

Courses Taught

  • HIST 211: U.S. History to 1865
  • HIST 212: U.S. History since 1865
  • HIST 300: Women in 20th Century America
  • HIST 381: Rebels and Reformers in American History
  • HIST 394: The 1960s
  • HIST 442: U.S. Women’s and Gender History
  • HIST 460: U.S. Urban Social and Cultural History
  • HIST 561: Seminar: Women's and Gender History

Selected Publications

Mothers of Conservatism: Women and the Postwar Right  (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2012)

Sunbelt Rising: The Politics of Space, Place, and Region  (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, co-editor, 2011)

"Goldwater's 'Moral Mothers?: Miscalculations of Gender in the 1964 Republican Presidential Campaign," Elizabeth Tandy Shermer, ed.  Goldwater Reconsidered: The Senator's Life, Politics, and Influence (Tempe: University of Arizona Press, 2013).

"Politically Desperate Housewives: Women and Conservatism in Postwar Los Angeles,” California History 86:3 (June 2009), 4-21.