Carnegie Mellon University

Judith Schachter

Judith Schachter

Professor Emeritus, History

Address Carnegie Mellon University
5000 Forbes Avenue,
Pittsburgh, PA 15213


JUDITH [Modell] SCHACHTER is a former Professor of Anthropology and History at Carnegie Mellon University. In 2001, she was appointed Director of the Center for the Arts in Society, an interdisciplinary Center joining the College of Humanities and Social Sciences and the College of Fine Arts. Her publications include Ruth Benedict (1983); Kinship with Strangers (1994), A Town without Steel: Envisioning Homestead, (with Charlee Brodsky, 1998); A Sealed and Secret Kinship (2002); Constructing Moral Communities: Pacific Islander Strategies for Settling in New Place (Editor, Special Issue, Pacific Studies, March-June 2002).

Schachter has published a number of methodological and theoretical articles on life histories, visual anthropology, and kinship, with a focus on adoption. Her work has concentrated on analyses of families in crisis, including economic collapse, disruptions of kinship patterns, and loss of political and cultural autonomy. In recent articles, she has explored the interconnections between individual lives and historical processes. Schachter does extensive research in Hawai'i, and her next book will be a cultural-historical portrait of an Hawaiian family that will also tell the story of Hawaii during the past century. Upon completion of that book, she will begin an inquiry into the origins and impact of sovereignty movements, with Hawaii as her prime case.

She has recently published a book that is the culmination of a long period of research in Hawaiʻi: The Legacies of a Hawaiian Generation. She is currently doing a new project that extends her work in Hawaiʻi to examine the processes of urbanization and the impact of these processes on the ways in which urbanized Native Hawaiian individuals identify as indigenous. This second book will reflect her continuing work in Hawaiʻi.