Sarah J. Zimmerman

she/they, Professor

Research Interests

  • Africa, colonialism, & gender

Current Courses

I regularly teach the following courses:

HIST 285  African History to 1800

HIST 286  African History since 1800

HIST 369  Women, Gender, and Sexuality in African History

HIST 385  West Africa and the Atlantic World

HIST 386  Southern Africa

HIST 387  Africa since the 1960s

HIST 402 Theory & History

I also offer thematic courses. Recent HIST 390 & HIST 490 course titles include "War and Militarization in Africa", "Memory and Public History in Africa," "Women, Gender, and the African Atlantic World," "FrançAfrique," & "African Migrations and Diasporas" 

Selected Publications

Militarizing Marriage: West African Soldiers' Conjugal Traditions in Modern French Empire (Ohio UP, 2020)

           Listen to an interview here:

           Another interview here:

The Gendered Consequences of Abolition and Citizenship on Nineteenth-Century Gorée Island" Journal of Women’s History 35, no. 3 (Fall 2023), 19-38. 10.1353/jowh.2023.a905188

“Colonial Misappropriations of Trans-Saharan Legacies: Abid al-Bukhari and Tirailleurs Sénégalais in Imperial and Colonial Morocco,” in The Black Populations of France : Histories from Metropole to Colony, edited by Sylvain Pattieu, Emmanuelle Sibeaud, and Tyler Stovall (Nebraska University Press, 2022).

“Women and Militarism,” Oxford Research Encyclopedia of African History, 17 December 2020

“Apatridie et décolonisation. Les tirailleurs sénégalais guinéens et la Guinée de Sékou Touré.” Les Temps Modernes (special edition “Guerres africaines de la France: 1830-2017. L’empire des armées” edited by Étienne Smith) 693 (2017): 111-145.

“Citizenship, Military Service, and Maintaining Exceptionalism: Originaires in World War One.” In Empires in World War I: Shifting Frontiers and Imperial Dynamics in a Global Conflict, edited by Andrew Jarboe and Richard Fogarty. I.B. Tauris, 2014.

Mesdames Tirailleurs and Indirect Clients: West African Women and the French Colonial Army, 1908-1918.” International Journal of African Historical Studies 44 (2011): 299-322.