Home of the Human Experience

You are here


Caroline Winterer specializes in the intellectual and cultural history of eighteenth- and nineteenth-century America in its transatlantic contexts. She focuses on the history of scholarship, books, reading, libraries, and education as well as on the history of art and material culture. She is also interested in the many ways in which the early Americans have made sense of the past, from the deep past of earth history to the more recent antiquity of ancient Mediterranean peoples and American Indians. She is currently working on Stanford's collaborative Mapping of the Republic of Letters project, which is digitally mapping some of the major European and American correspondance networks and libraries of the early modern scholarly world (1500-1800). As a part of this project she is mapping the extensive correspondance network of Benjamin Franklin, as well as the holdings of the Library Company of Philadelphia, the leading library of Enlightenment America.

In addition to authoring The Mirror of Antiquity: American Women and the Classical Tradition, 1750-1900 (2007) and The Culture of Classicism: Ancient Greece and Rome in American Intellectual Life, 1780-1910 (2002; pb 2004), she has also published articles in the Journal of American History, the American Quarterly, the Journal of the Early Republic, and Modern Intellectual History. She is the recipient of fellowships from the National Humanities Center, the Mellon Foundation, the Stanford Humanities Center, and the National Endowment for the Humanities.

She is the current director of the Stanford Humanities Center.

Prof. Winterer in the News

June 4, 2015
The “digital humanities” is an increasingly popular field of research within humanities departments...
May 19, 2015
The Stanford Humanities Center has announced the recipients of its competition for full-year...
May 12, 2015
Albert Camus' 1942 classic, The Stranger , raises tough questions about culture clash and how we...
November 20, 2014
Humanities Center Director Caroline Winterer delivers a lively talk on how the Stanford Library's...
November 19, 2014
Addressing a group of invited guests at the Stanford University Library on October 20, Stanford...
May 29, 2014
Notice anything different lately? The Stanford Humanities Center website has been fully redesigned...
April 29, 2014
History professor Alan Taylor has won the 2014 Pulitzer Prize in history for his book The Internal...
December 1, 2013
When Stanford historian Caroline Winterer was awarded the American Ingenuity Award on November 19,...
April 17, 2013
Winterer, a scholar of the early Americas with a joint appointment in Classics, will lead the...
January 2, 2010
Ancient Rome in America Eighteenth-and nineteenth-century Americans were fascinated by ancient Rome...
Human Experience video interview with Prof. Winterer about the exhibit, December 15, 2009
Odyssey (WBEZ), May 3, 2005
Human Experience, January 2010

Audio and Video

Using early images of Native Americans and maps of the American West, Humanities Center Director Caroline Winterer discusses how the Tanenbaum collection illuminates American history. 

Addressing a group of invited guests at the Stanford University Library on October 20, Stanford historian Caroline Winterer discusses the catalog of the Charles J. Tanenbaum Collection of the Eighteenth Century. 

Winterer's talk celebrates the launching of the Tanenbaum Collection's printed catalog, over 300 pages long, that includes early editions of such works as Thomas Jefferson's Notes on the State of Virginia. Using a colorful series of images and maps, Winterer's lively talk illustrates how students and visitors can witness a transformation in American ideas of the people and topography of North America. 

Tanenbaum, an avid rare-book collector, donated his extensive collection of books and manuscripts to the Stanford Library so that students could engage with original source materials. The collection is used regularly by students and professors researching this period of early American History. 

October 20, 2014

Stanford Professor of History and Stanford Humanities Center Director Caroline Winterer, talks about how she approaches the American enlightenment as a series of intellectual, cultural, and artistic transformations. 

March 5, 2015

Professor of Philosophy at New York University Samuel Scheffler discusses how we are more invested in the fate of our descendants than we may realize and that we have more reasons to care about what happens to them than we commonly acknowledge. 

June 16, 2015


  • 19th-century U.S. History
  • American Cultural and Intellectual History
  • Art and Material Culture
  • Colonial America
  • History of Women
  • Pre-20th-century American Women
  • Reception of Classical Antiquity
  • Revolutionary America
  • The American Enlightenment

Contact information

Bldg 200, Rm 319


History Department Profile


B.A., cum laude, Pomona College, 1988
A.M., University of Michigan, 1991
Ph.D., University of Michigan, 1996