Christy Pichichero (AB Princeton; BM Eastman; PhD Stanford) is associate professor of French and history at George Mason University. She is a specialist of the early modern French empire, race, and African diasporic studies and author of The Military Enlightenment: War and Culture in the French Empire from Louis XIV to Napoleon (Cornell, 2017; finalist, Kenshur Book Prize). Pichichero is the past president of the Western Society for French History, recipient of a 2021 Presidential Medal at GMU, and her public-facing work has been featured on NPR, NBC News, Forbes, The Hill, and other venues.
From Slavery to Stardom: Family, Freedom, and the First Black Celebrity, Joseph Bologne, Chevalier de Saint-George
Based on years of archival excavation across three continents, Song of Saint-George is the first in Pichichero’s two-part book series on African diasporic lives of the French empire between the seventeenth and early nineteenth centuries. Shedding new light on better-known figures like the famed composer-violinist-swordsman Joseph Bologne, Chevalier de Saint-George (1745-1799) and foregrounding understudied figures, such as Saint-George’s free Black mother Nanon and generations of African-descended families connected to the French armed forces, these projects restore the rich diversity of intersectional positionalities that coexisted in France during this era of global trade, war, colonization, and slavery. Pichichero’s research engages theories of race, gender, sexuality, and diaspora to trace the structural roots of modern racial formation and resistance amongst African-descended communities in West Africa, the Caribbean, and the European continent.
"'Ma France, c'est Joséphine': The Crucible of Race in French and Francophone Studies," Journal of the Western Society for French History, Vol. 48, 2022.
"'Is God Still French?': Racecraft, States of Exception, and the Creation of l'Exception Française," PMLA, Vol. 137, No. 1 (2022).
"Race, Racism, and the Study of France and the Francophone World Today," co-edited with Dr. Emily Marker (Rutgers-Camden)
(interdisciplinary, transnational conversation about race, racism, and scholarship)
(race, racism, and the profession)
(teaching race and racism in French Studies and History)
The Military Enlightenment: War and Culture in the French Empire from Louis XIV to Napoleon (Cornell University Press, 2017; paperback 2020)