Professor, Director of Graduate Studies
Martin Summers is a cultural historian of the nineteenth- and twentieth-century U.S., with particular research and teaching interests in race, gender, sexuality, and medicine. He regularly teaches courses on post-1865 U.S. and African American history, gender and sexuality in African-American history, and medicine and public health in the African diaspora.
Summers’ current book project, Inner City Blues: African American Mental Health and Social Policy in Twentieth Century Urban America, is an historical examination of how social scientists, psychiatrists and psychiatric social workers, government officials, and community organizers understood the relationship between urbanization and mental illness, and consequently sought to address the mental health care needs of African Americans in so-called ghettoes. Summers’ research has been supported by the Ford Foundation, the American Council of Learned Societies, the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, and the National Humanities Center.