Leon Fink

Leon Fink

Fellow: Awarded 2008
Field of Study: U.S. History

Competition: US & Canada

University of Illinois, Chicago

Leon Fink is a UIC Distinguished Professor in the Department of History at the University of Illinois, Chicago. He is a specialist in American labor, immigration history, and the Gilded Age/Progressive Era, directs the Ph.D. concentration in History of Work, Race, and Gender in the Urban World (WRGUW), and edits the journal Labor: Studies in Working Class History of the Americas. Seeking the roots of today’s "globalized" economic order, he is working on a study of maritime labor regulation, 1800-2000, during his Guggenheim Fellowship term. 

The author or editor of seven books, he has most recently traced the transnational experience of recent Latino immigrants in The Maya of Morganton: Work and Community in the Nuevo New South (U. of North Carolina Press, 2003).  Other works include Progressive Intellectuals and the Dilemmas of Democratic Commitment (Harvard UP, 1998), In Search of the Working Class: Essays in American Labor History and Political Culture (U. of Illinois Press, 1994), Upheaval in the Quiet Zone:  The History of Hospital Workers Union, Local 1199  (U. of Illinois Press, 1989) (coauthored with Brian Greenberg), and Workingmen’s Democracy: The Knights of Labor and American Politics (U. of Illinois Press, 1983).

A Fulbright Senior Scholar and past NEH Fellow, Mr. Fink has also taken a leading role in national history education circles, where he has stressed the necessary collaboration between the university and the public schools.


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