Read Dr. Mizelle new piece on “What is Animal History and Why Does it Matter?”

Dr. Mizelle is one of the author’s of the newly published “What is Animal History and Why Does it Matter?”. The piece is part of the recently published Handbook of Historical Animal Studies, which you can read more about here

Dr. Mizelle and his co-authors argue that “Relationships between humans and other animals are multi-faceted, often intimate, and frequently ambivalent. Most of all, they are deeply historical. The surging field of animal history aims to tell these stories.” 

You can read the entire piece here.

Read Dr. Sharma’s new article in Labor Studies!

Dr. Sharma just published an article, entitled, “Time Theft in the Los Angeles Retail Sector: The Need for New Labor Standards and a Fair Workweek,” in Labor Studies, the official journal of the United Association for Labor Education.

In it, Dr. Sharma and her co-authors examine how “employers subject workers to time theft by controlling workers’ time—both on and off the clock. Time theft considers employer control of workers’ time without the promise of pay through unstable scheduling practices as well as beyond their scheduled work hours.” “Through a discussion of survey and workshop data with retail workers in Los Angeles,” they conclude, “We underscore how federal labor law is inadequate to address unstable scheduling and we discuss retail worker organizing and the implications of time theft for labor policy and worker movements.”

Find the full article here.

Dr. Sharma featured on

Dr. Sharma was featured on a recent CNN article entitled, ” How South Asian-owned threading salons in the US became a space for community.”

From the article, “Despite the prospect of long hours and low wages, many artists prefer threading over other service jobs because of the sense of community it offers, according to Preeti Sharma, an assistant professor of American studies at California State University, Long Beach, who has written a dissertation on the subject. “There is something about folks wanting to work with others in their community, and a kind of comfort,” Sharma said in a phone interview.”

Read the full article here


Dr. Gomer’s Book Named a “Best Black History Book of 2020”

Dr. Gomer’s book, White Balance: How Hollywood Shaped Colorblind Ideology and Undermined Civil Rights, was named one of “The Best Black History Books of 2020” by The African American Intellectual History Society.

Read the full list here.

White Balance

NPR Interviews & Podcasts with Dr. Gomer about his book

Dr. Gomer has recently done several interviews on NPR and podcasts about his book. Here are links to each of those appearances:

I. “Hollywood’s Colorblind Illusion.” Think radio show. KERA. NPR Dallas. September 14, 2020.

II. “Hollywood’s Colorblindness Problem.” All of It radio show. WNYC. New York Public Radio. August 6, 2020.

III. New Books in History podcast. New Books Network. July 24, 2020.


Congratulations AMST Spring 2020 Graduates & Award Winners!

Congratulations to the twenty-three majors and six minors who graduated in Spring 2020! We are all incredibly proud of your accomplishments, even more so given the disruption to your final semester at Long Beach State. We hope you stay in touch as part of the “American Studies at the Beach” family, so please forward us your non-CSULB email address and follow us on social media, if you don’t do so already.

Award Winners

The American Studies Program also wishes to congratulate the following 2019-2020 academic year award winners:

Distinguished Undergraduates:

Jillian Gronnerud and Wendy Rosales

Outstanding Minors:

Hayley Lim, Megan Maeda, and Isabel Saucedo

Community Engagement Awards:

Edna Dominguez & Brittany Plunkett

Resilience Award:

Alan Hernandez


Dr. Gomer’s book is out!

White Balance | Justin Gomer | University of North Carolina Press

Dr. Gomer’s book, White Balance: How Hollywood Shaped Colorblind Ideology and Undermined Civil Rights is out!

You can order it through UNC Press or Amazon.

Check out some of the advance praise:

“Justin Gomer’s finely nuanced and superbly written book could have been titled ‘Believing Is Not Seeing: How Hollywood Taught Us to Stop Worrying about Race and Love Neoliberalism.’ He reveals how Hollywood films helped transform colorblind ideology from a liberal weapon against prejudice into the new common sense that ‘race’ no longer matters since racism is dead. A tour de force, Gomer’s takedown of colorblind ideology offers a new perspective on the drama, comedy, and horror that is the late twentieth century.”–Robin D. G. Kelley, author of Thelonious Monk: The Life and Times of an American Original

“Colorblindness is one of the most dominant political ideologies of the last thirty years, and here is a well-written and imaginative contribution to the rich discourse on its power and significance in the post–civil rights era. Focusing on Hollywood films, Gomer makes smart and important connections between the end of the studio system and the fall of Jim Crow and the subsequent closer links between New Hollywood and colorblind politics.”–Matthew Pratt Guterl, author of Seeing Race in Modern America

Dr. Sharma’s research featured by KCET!

Click here to read more about workers in the nail salon industry, most of whom are immigrants paid less than the minimum wage. Our own Dr. Sharma is part of the team of researchers behind the insightful report cited in this article.

Read Dr. Gomer’s article in The Washington Post

Click here to read Dr. Gomer’s latest article in The Washington Post. 

Dr. Gomer featured in the New York Times

Click here to read this excellent article about recent Hollywood portrayals of racial injustice in the New York Times, which features an interview with our own Dr. Justin Gomer.