Carnegie Mellon University

Nico Slate

Nico Slate

Professor of History and Department Head


Nico Slate’s research and teaching focus on the history of social movements in the United States and India. He is the author of five books: Brothers: A Memoir of Love, Loss, and Race (Temple University Press, 2023); Lord Cornwallis Is Dead: The Struggle for Democracy in the United States and India (Harvard University Press, 2019); Gandhi’s Search for the Perfect Diet: Eating with the World in Mind (University of Washington Press, 2019); The Prism of Race: W.E.B. Du Bois, Langston Hughes, Paul Robeson and the Colored World of Cedric Dover (Palgrave Macmillan, 2014); and Colored Cosmopolitanism: The Shared Struggle for Freedom in the United States and India (Harvard University Press, 2012). He is also the editor of Black Power Beyond Borders (Palgrave MacMillan, 2013), and co-editor, with Professor Harald Fischer-Tiné, of Indo-US Entanglements: The United States and South Asia from the Age of Empire to Decolonisation (Leiden University Press, 2022).
Dr. Slate is currently at work on three books. The Art of Freedom: Kamaladevi Chattopadhyay and the Making of Modern India (under contract with Penguin Random House India) narrates the life and work of one of India’s most dedicated antiracist activists, a key figure in India’s anticolonial struggle, a prominent advocate of women’s rights, a founding member of colonial India’s most important socialist party, and one of the most influential supporters of the arts in post-independence India. A Peculiar Lucidity: Surviving the 1918 Pandemic offers a collective biography of seven people who survived the 1918-19 influenza pandemic: an American writer, a British statesman, an Indian freedom fighter, a Norwegian painter, an American artist, a Bohemian writer, and a Canadian actress. Truth and Power: The Highlander Folk School and the Radical Civil Rights Movement provides a grassroots intellectual history of the struggle against American racism, a history grounded in some 100 hours of audio recordings of civil rights workshops conducted at an integrated educational institution in the hills of Tennessee. In addition to these books, Dr. Slate is currently co-editing, with Professor Rajeshwari Dutt, a volume entitled India in the World: 1500-Present, which is currently under contract at Routledge.

Dr. Slate is the faculty director of LEAP, a program for high school students who are passionate about the arts, humanities, and social sciences. Born in Los Angeles and raised in California's Mojave Desert, he 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.

To read more about Nico Slate, please visit his personal website.


Ph.D.: Harvard University, 2009



Edited Volumes

Articles and Book Chapters

Courses Taught

  • Barack Obama and the History of Race in America
  • India/America: Democracy, Diversity, Development
  • Gandhi and King: Nonviolent Leadership in a Globalized World
  • The Civil Rights Movement and the World
  • Sustainable Social Change: History and Practice
  • India Today: Economics, Technology, and People
  • India in the World: A History of Globalization
  • Innovation and Social Change

Department Member Since: 2009