Carnegie Mellon University

Nico Slate

Nico Slate

Professor, History

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


Nico Slate’s research and teaching focus on the history of social movements in the United States and India. His first book, Colored Cosmopolitanism: The Shared Struggle for Freedom in the United States and India (Harvard University Press, 2012), argues that South Asians and African Americans learned from each other in ways that advanced their struggles for freedom. He is the editor of Black Power Beyond Borders (Palgrave MacMillan, 2013), a volume that tracks the global dimensions of the Black Power movement. His most recent book is The Prism of Race: W.E.B. Du Bois, Langston Hughes, Paul Robeson and the Colored World of Cedric Dover (Palgrave Macmillan, 2014). The Prism of Race examines a crucial moment in the history of race through the lens of a self-described “Eurasian half-caste,” born in Calcutta in 1904, and his relationships with leading African American artists and intellectuals.

Dr. Slate is currently at work on three books: a study of race in Los Angeles after 1965; a biography of Mahatma Gandhi focused on his diet; and a history of connections between India and the United States from the 18th century to the present. He is the founder and director of the Bajaj Rural Development Lab, the Social Change Semester, and, and is a regular contributor to the Arts Greenhouse, a hip hop education program that promotes the artistic and educational development of Pittsburgh teenagers.

Born in Los Angeles and raised in California's Mojave Desert, Dr. Slate earned degrees in Earth Systems and the Interdisciplinary Studies in the Humanities from Stanford University and in Environmental Change and Management from Oxford University before completing his Ph.D. in History at Harvard University.