Nancy Baker, Ph.D.

Associate Professor

EducationNancy Baker Photo

Ph.D., History, Harvard University, 2003

A.M., History, Harvard University, 1993

M.A., History, The George Washington University, 1993

B.A., magna cum laude, History, Rutgers University, 1990


My research is on the history of gender, politics, and reform, focusing in particular on feminism and anti-feminism in the United States. Currently I am completing revisions on a monograph on the role of rescission in the Equal Rights Amendment battle of the 1970s and working on two new projects: a history of the feminist legal reformers who changed Texas law in the 20th century, and a study of the widely divergent views within feminism in the 1970s on sex work, as exemplified by COYOTE (Call Off Your Old Tired Ethics, a prostitutes’ rights organization) and Women Against Pornography.

I am a recipient of the University of North Texas Special Collections Fellowship, the Southern Methodist University’s Ruth P. Morgan Fellowship, the Kentucky Historical Society Scholarly Research Fellowship, the Texas Tech University Formby Fellowship, and an Earhart Foundation Fellowship. My book chapter “Focus on the Family” was nominated for the Southern Association of Women’s Historians’ A. Elizabeth Taylor Prize for Best Article in the Field of Southern women’s history. In 2016, SHSU granted me a Faculty Development Leave in support of my research and writing, a leave I took in 2017. 

SHSU’s Faculty Senate chose me to lead as Senate Chair for 2014-2015. In 2015-2016, I served as the Interim Associate Chair for the History Department. Provost Dick Eglsaer nominated me in 2016 for the Texas State University System Chancellor’s Faculty Fellowship. I served as Interim Associate Vice Provost at SHSU for 2016-2017. I have helped to write two successful grants for major on-campus change initiatives funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation : Re-Imagining the First Year (2015-2018) and the Frontier Set (2016-2021).

President Dana Hoyt of SHSU nominated me for the Texas State University System Regents’ Teacher Award in 2018. In 2015, SHSU bestowed upon me the Excellence in Teaching Award, for which I had been a finalist the previous four years. The same year, the American Historical Association selected me as a participant in their Tuning Project. The AHA awarded me a grant to attend their workshop. They have since asked me to be on discussion panels and facilitate sessions at the annual AHA Texas Conference on Teaching Introductory Surveys, and they have invited me to write guest blog posts on the AHA Tuning Project blog. I have also completed the ACUE Fellows Program, a year-long course in best practices in teaching offered by the Association of College and University Educators, and the Faculty Success Program, provided by the National Center for Faculty Development and Diversity; SHSU funded my participation in both of these programs. 

I am active in the American Historical Association, the Organization of American Historians, the Southern Historical Association, the Southern Association for Women Historians, the Texas State Historical Association, and the East Texas Historical Association. I am a member of the editorial board for the "Women and the American West” monograph series with the University of Oklahoma Press, and previously I was on the editorial board for the Texas Tech University Press monograph series “Women, Gender and the West” and Register of the Kentucky Historical Society. I am also on the Executive Advisory Committee for the Handbook of Texas Women. 

Selected Courses:


HIST 1301 US History to 1876

HIST 1302 US History since 1876

HIST 3327 Topics in the History of Gender and Sexuality

HIST 3379 Recent America, 1945 to the Present

HIST 3383 American Women’s History

HIST 3399 Introduction to American Studies (course number varies)


HIST 5301 Methods in History

HIST 5376 Contemporary America, 1933-Present

HIST 5382 Topics in the History of Women

HIST 6098 Thesis I

HIST 6099 Thesis II

Selected Publications

Taking it Back: The Equal Rights Amendment and the Politics of Rescission (currently in revision).

Texas Feminism Between and Beyond the Waves (advance contract with Louisiana State University Press; in progress)

“’I remember it well. I lived it’: Louise Ballerstedt Raggio and The Passage of the Marital Property Act of 1967,” in Eavesdropping on Texas History, ed. Mary Lou Kelley-Scheer (University of North Texas Press, 2017)

“Integrating Women into Modern Kentucky History: The Equal Rights Amendment Debate (1972–1978) as a Case Study,” Register of the Kentucky Historical Society: Interpreting Twentieth-Century Kentucky History, vol. 113, no.s 2 & 3 (special issue, Spring/Summer 2015) 477-507.

“Foreword,” in Women in the Central Spanish and Mexican Borderlands: Their Lives through Their Wills, 1750-1846, by Amy Porter (Texas Tech University Press, 2015) xi-xiii; winner of the 2015 Lou Halsell Rodenberger Prize in History, Culture and Literature.

“Hermine Tobolowsky: A Feminist’s Fight for Equal Rights,” in Texas Women: Their Histories, Their Lives, ed. Elizabeth Hayes Turner, Stephanie Cole, and Rebecca Sharpless (University of Georgia Press, 2015) 434-456; winner of the 2016 Liz Carpenter Award for Best Book on the History of Women

“Focus on the Family: Twentieth-century Conservative Texas Women and the Lone Star Right,” in The Texas Right: The Radical Roots of Lone Star Conservatism, ed. David Cullen and Kyle Wilkison (Texas A&M University Press, 2014).