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Hulden, Vilja

Senior Instructor


Research Areas research areas


research overview

  • Vilja Hulden's work focuses on American labor and social history around the turn of the twentieth century. Besides traditional historical research, she makes use of digital humanities approaches like text mining, machine learning, and social network analysis. Dr. Hulden's first book, The Bosses’ Union: How Employers Organized to Fight Labor Before the New Deal, which examines unions' efforts at workplace governance and employer opposition to unions, was published by the University of Illinois Press in January 2023. Her new project is a computational examination of representation at U.S. Congressional hearings since 1877. Called 'Speaking to the State,' this project (which won a NEH-Mellon Digital Publications grant in 2021) aims to illuminate who has gotten their voice heard at the U.S. Capitol over the past century and a half.


  • labor history, digital humanities, digital scholarship, US history, social history


selected publications


courses taught

  • FYSM 1000 - First Year Seminar
    Primary Instructor - Fall 2018 / Fall 2019
    Provide first year students with an immersive experience in an interdisciplinary topic that addresses current issues including social, technical and global topics. Taught by faculty from across campus, the course provides students with an opportunity to interact in small classes, have project based learning experiences and gain valuable communication skills. Seminar style classes focused on discussion and projects.
  • HIST 1015 - American History to 1865
    Primary Instructor - Spring 2018 / Fall 2019 / Fall 2023
    Examines American history from pre-Columbian times to the Civil War, including ancient cultures, exploration, colonization, Native American responses, the rise of race slavery, the American Revolution, political developments, Anglo-American expansion, slave life and culture, the market revolution, industrialization, reform and disunion. Introduces students to history as a dynamic discipline that shapes our understanding of the past and present. Meets MAPS requirement for social science: general or U.S. history.
  • HIST 2166 - The Vietnam Wars
    Primary Instructor - Fall 2019
    Traces the causes, course, and outcome of the wars in Vietnam from 1940 until 1975. Explains the successes of the revolutionaries and the failures of the French and Americans. Analyzes the development of Vietnamese nationalism, French colonialism, and U.S. intervention. Similar to HIST 4166.
  • HIST 3020 - Historical Thinking & Writing
    Primary Instructor - Spring 2019 / Spring 2020 / Spring 2023 / Spring 2024
    The second cornerstone course for history majors centers on the essential skills all historians use. Students will advance their reading, sourcing, and research techniques, hone critical, analytical, and synthetic skills, navigate scholarly discourse, and practice historical writing. As this simultaneously satisfies the College's upper-division writing requirement, all sections involve substantial, regular, and varied writing assignments as well as instruction in methods and the revision process. All topical variations of this course are limited to a maximum of 18 students in order to focus on supporting students as they learn to write - and think - like an historian. Topics will vary by section. Recommended for sophomores or juniors, HIST 3020 may be taken concurrently with, but not prior to, HIST 1800. May be repeated up to 6 total credit hours.
  • HIST 4166 - The Vietnam War in Politics and Culture
    Primary Instructor - Spring 2018 / Summer 2019 / Summer 2020 / Spring 2023 / Spring 2024
    Examines America's second-longest and most divisive war from the beginning of the U.S. involvement in the 1950s to the repercussions echoing into the 1980s. Considers the global context, motives, and evolution of U.S. involvement, support for and opposition to the war at home, the war's repercussions in international policy and domestic politics, and representations of the war in popular culture. Degree credit not granted for this course and HIST 2166.
  • HIST 4435 - From the Cold War to the Counterculture: U.S. History 1945-73
    Primary Instructor - Spring 2019 / Spring 2020 / Spring 2024
    Analyzes high politics, grassroots movements, and cultural change in the years of unprecedented economic prosperity and rapid change after WWII. Explores the foreign and domestic politics of the Cold War; labor unionism; the Vietnam War; the Civil Rights, antiwar, and women's rights movements; and technocultural changes like the rise of television and the growing dominance of the automobile. Recommended prerequisite: HIST 1025.
  • HIST 4726 - A Nation of Immigrants: Immigration in American History
    Primary Instructor - Fall 2018 / Spring 2021 / Summer 2022 / Fall 2023
    Examines the shifting kaleidoscope of immigration to the United Sates in the 19th and 20th centuries. Considers immigrant motives, cultures and experiences; changing cultural and political ideas about the value of immigration; the relationship of immigration and immigration policy to ideas about the American national project; the creation and consequences of immigration law.
  • HIST 4990 - History Lab: Methods, Sources, and Practices of the Past
    Primary Instructor - Spring 2018
    Offers students an additional, intensive, historical learning experience intended to enrich and deepen students' study of the past. lab credit is deigned to enhance the traditional three-credit upper-division lecture course by offering students supplementary training in aspects of historical methods, interpretation, application tools, and analysis. Possible lab topics might include but not be limited to: oral history lab, digital history lab, primary source lab, etc.


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