Professor Emerita of History
A.B., Brandeis University; Ed.M., Harvard Graduate School of Education; Ph.D., Boston University
Twentieth-century American social and cultural history, American Studies, immigration, race, ethnicity and consumer culture
Marilyn Halter’s interdisciplinary scholarship spans the fields of history, sociology, and anthropology with particular emphasis on ethnographic and oral history methodologies and with specializations in the study of immigrants of African descent, New England and Boston immigrant and ethnic history as well as the relationship of commerce and culture. Her published works include African & American: West Africans in Post-Civil Rights America with Violet Showers Johnson (2014); Shopping for Identity: The Marketing of Ethnicity (2000); Between Race and Ethnicity: Cape Verdean American Immigrants, 1860-1965 (1993); The Historical Dictionary of the Republic of Cape Verde [with Richard Lobban] (1988); her edited volume, New Migrants in the Marketplace: Boston’s Ethnic Entrepreneurs (1995); and the forthcoming anthology, What’s New about the ‘New’ Immigration to the U.S.?Traditions and Transformations since 1965 [co-edited with Marilynn Johnson, Katheryn Viens and Conrad Wright].
In addition to her long-standing affiliation with BU’s Institute on Culture, Religion and World Affairs, Halter served as one of the core teaching faculty in the American and New England Studies Program. She also serves as the co-editor of the New England in the World series at the University of New Hampshire Press and has co-chaired the Boston Immigration and Urban History Seminar, an on-going series in conjunction with the Massachusetts Historical Society, since its inception 15 years ago.