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Jeff Pasley

Associate Professor
Arts and Science

Areas of Expertise


Pasley, Jeff

In a long-sought homecoming, Prof. Pasley joined the MU History Department in1999 after several years at Florida State University in Tallahassee. One of his first experiences with historical research was driving his grandfather (who lived in Jefferson City) to the State Historical Society of Missouri, across the street from the History Department’s Read Hall, to work on his genealogy. Pasley last lived in the Midwest in 1986, when he graduated from Carleton College in Northfield, Minnesota. After Carleton, he moved to Washington, D.C., where he worked as a reporter-researcher for The New Republic and then as a junior speechwriter for Al Gore’s failed 1988 presidential campaign.
Finding past American politics more engaging that the present-day variety, Pasley entered the History of American Civilization program at Harvard in 1988, studying early American history with Bernard Bailyn and writing a dissertation on the rise of professional politicians. Pasley’s research (encompassing several different projects) focuses on American political culture between the American Revolution and the Civil War, with particular emphasis on the practical aspects and middle levels of political life. This interest has led him to such misunderstood or little-studied topics as the histories of the partisan press, lobbying, and campaign.

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