skip to primary navigationskip to content

Dr Julia Guarneri

Dr Julia Guarneri

Senior Lecturer in American History

Fitzwilliam College
Storey's Way

Cambridge CB3 0JD


I am a social and cultural historian of the United States, with particular interests in media, urban history, and popular culture.  I did my BA at Cornell University, and completed my PhD at Yale.  Before joining the Cambridge Faculty of History in 2015, I taught at the University of Pittsburgh as an ACLS New Faculty Fellow, at Colgate University as a visiting professor, and at City College in Manhattan as an adjunct professor. 

Subject groups/Research projects

American History:

Research Interests

My book, Newsprint Metropolis: City Papers and the Making of Modern Americans (University of Chicago Press, 2017) is a history of mainstream daily newspapers and the cities they served.  This history looks beyond newspapers’ front pages to much-loved features such as the sports page, the metropolitan section, the Sunday magazine, and the comic strips.  The book reconstructs the role newspapers played in creating metropolitan spaces and distinctive urban cultures. It won the 2018 Eugenia M. Palmegiano Prize, awarded by the American Historical Association for the best book on the history of journalism in any area of the world, and the 2018 Jane Jacobs Urban Communication Book Award.

You can read a short piece of my newspaper research, on the birth of the metropolitan section, here.  I continue to write on the history of media in the U.S.; I am currently at work on an article on the women’s pages in turn-of-the-century newspapers, and I am researching the history of the Hearst newspaper chain. 

My next major project, which I will begin during an early career fellowship at CRASSH in 2019, will be a history of American body language.

Research Supervision

I welcome inquiries from prospective graduate students interested in the nineteenth- and twentieth-century United States, especially cultural history, urban history, and popular and print culture topics.


I teach Paper 24 (American History from 1865 to the present) in Part I of the history Tripos, and for Part II I teach a Specified Subject, "Consumption and Consumer Culture in the United States." I supervise Part II dissertations on nineteenth- and twentieth-century American history, and I supervise for the MPhil in American history.

Key Publications

Newsprint Metropolis: City Papers and the Making of Modern Americans (University of Chicago Press, 2017)

"Progressive Political Culture and the Widening Scope of Local Newspapers, 1880-1930" in Media Nation: The Political History of News in Modern America, ed. Bruce J. Schulman and Julian E. Zelizer (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2017)

“Popular Culture” in A Companion to the Gilded Age and Progressive Era, ed. Christopher McKnight Nichols and Nancy Unger (Wiley-Blackwell, 2017)

“Changing Strategies for Child Welfare, Enduring Beliefs About Childhood: The Fresh Air Fund, 1877-1926,” Journal of the Gilded Age and Progressive Era, Vol. 11, No. 1 (January 2012): 27-70.