Catherine Kudlick

Sherry Keith
Director, Paul K. Longmore Institute on Disability
Affiliated Professor, Université Paris VII (Diderot), Laboratoire ICT
(415) 405-3528
Building: Humanities
Room Number: 136
Office Hours: 
Tuesday: 1:00 pm-2:00 pm
Thursday: 1:00 pm-2:00 pm
Building: Humanities
Room Number: 136 by appointment


I’ve been fully formed and nurtured in California public schools and universities, all in northern California. Fortunately, my scholarly career made it possible for me to give back, first for more than two decades as a history professor at University of California, Davis, and since 2012 as a member of the SF State faculty.  


  • Ph.D. History, University of California, Berkeley, 1988
  • M.A. History, University of California, Berkeley, 1983
  • B.A. History, University of California, Santa Cruz, 1980

Courses Recently Taught


  • Epidemics and Society in Europe, 1500-1900
  • Disability and Culture in Modern America
  • Veterans in World History


  • History of Bodies, Bodies of History

Research Interests

I’m fascinated by the places where bodies, disability, medicine and gender come together. My current research focuses on smallpox in 18th and 19th century France to understand how disability became part of ordinary rather than extraordinary experiences.  

Selected Publications



  • “Disability History: Why We Need Another Other” American Historical Review
  • “Disability History and History of Medicine: Rival Siblings or Conjoined Twins?” forum, Bulletin of the History of Medicine
  • “The Blind Man’s Harley: White Canes and Gender in America” Signs (listed as one of the top 100 essays in Best American Essays 2005, Lauren Slater ed., 2006
  • “Smallpox, Disability and Survival: Rewriting Paradigms from a New Epidemic Script” in Susan Burch and Michael Rembis, eds., New Directions in Disability History
  • Exhibit: “Patient No More: People with Disabilities Securing Civil Rights" (Ed Roberts Campus, Berkeley CA July 2015-January 2016; San Francisco Main Public Library, June-September 2017

Selected Awards

  • Neda Nobari “Spotlight on Change-Makers” Acknowledgement 2017
  • ABC-7 Television “Profile in Excellence” Award 2014.
  • American Council of Learned Societies (ACLS) 
  • Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health, Short-Term Visiting Professor, September 2008
  • College Board, Top Five Best Practices Course in European History

Professional Service

  • past-president, Disability History Association
  • past board member, Society for Disability Studies
  • past board member, Western Society for French History

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