UW Professor Stephanie Camp, 46, feminist historian, diestags: Stephanie Camp
She was a well-known feminist historian who wrote a groundbreaking book on enslaved women in the antebellum South, and a social-justice activist who dared to take controversial stands. But Stephanie Camp was also known for her love of popular culture and her sense of adventure and for hosting great parties.
The University of Washington history professor died April 2 of cancer at the age of 46.
Professor Camp’s book, “Closer to Freedom: Enslaved Women and Everyday Resistance in the Plantation South,” which is in its second printing, led to a new understanding of how enslaved women resisted their captivity in the 19th century. It was cited not only for the quality of its scholarship but also for the beauty of the writing.
The book “transformed the field of American social history,” said Chandan Reddy, an associate professor of English at the UW.
Professor Camp was widely admired among historians. In late March, Harvard University President Drew Gilpin Faust, who knew Professor Camp at the University of Pennsylvania, sent an email to be read to her as Professor Camp lay dying.
“Tell her how much I have admired her since she was my TA many years ago,” Faust wrote. “Students heard her courage and saw her integrity and learned from it in ways they never forgot. Her scholarship did the same.”
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