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Lara Vapnek

Associate Professor
Ph.D., Columbia University

Educational Background
Ph.D., History Department, Columbia University, 2000
M.Phil., History Department, Columbia University, 1994
M.A., History Department, Columbia University, 1992
B.A., Barnard College, magna cum laude, with Honors in History, 1990

Lara Vapnek specializes in the history of gender and labor in the nineteenth- and twentieth-century United States. Her forthcoming book, Elizabeth Gurley Flynn: Modern American Revolutionary, uses Flynn’s (1890-1964) dramatic life story to track the rise and fall of radical challenges to capitalism. Breadwinners: Working Women and Economic Independence, 1865-1920, Vapnek’s first book, demonstrates how female wage earners pursued equality by claiming new identities as citizens and as workers. Vapnek’s current research examines the intersections between motherhood, social class, and state formation, arguing that debates about infant feeding set the parameters of state responsibility for public health and redefined human rights.  Prior to her appointment at St. John's University, Vapnek taught at Columbia University, Rutgers University, and Barnard College.