Jocelyn Olcott

Associate Professor of History

External address: 
201 Carr Bldg, Durham, NC 27708
Internal office address: 
Box 90719, Durham, NC 27708-0719
(919) 668-5298
Office Hours: 
By appointment.


Jocelyn Olcott is Associate Professor of History and Gender, Sexuality, and Feminist Studies at Duke University. Mexico. Her first book, Revolutionary Women in Postrevolutionary Mexico, explores questions of gender and citizenship in the 1930s.  Her second book, International Women’s Year:  The Greatest Consciousness-Raising Event in History considers the history and legacies of the United Nation’s first world conference on women in 1975 in Mexico City (Oxford University Press, forthcoming Spring 2017).  Her current project, a biography of the activist and folksinger Concha Michel, a one-time Communist who became an icon of maternalist feminism and a vocal advocate for recognizing the economic importance of subsistence labors, is under contract with Duke University Press.  The book follows Michel's life story from the late nineteenth century to the late twentieth to examine the ways that the concept, labor, and policies surrounding “motherhood” articulated with major shifts in political-economic thought — from late-nineteenth-century liberalism to revolutionary nationalism, populism, modernization theory, dependency theory, and neoliberalism.

Education & Training

  • Ph.D., Yale University 2000

  • M.A., Yale University 1996

  • B.A., Princeton University 1992

Olcott, JH. International Women's Year: The Greatest Consciousness-Raising Event in History (Accepted). New York: Oxford University Press, July 3, 2017. (Edited Book)

Cano, G, Olcott, J, and Vaughan, MK. Género, poder y politico en el México posrevolucionario. Fondo de Cultura Económica, 2009.

Olcott, J, Vaughan, MK, and Cano, G. Sex in Revolution: Gender, Politics, and Power in Modern Mexico. Duke University Press, 2006.

Olcott, J. Revolutionary Women in Postrevolutionary Mexico. Duke University Press, 2005.

Olcott, J. "Review of Rosana Blanco Cano, Cuerpos disidentes del México imaginado." Estudios Interdisciplinarios de América Latina y el Caribe (2013).

Olcott, J. "Review of Joanne Hershfield, Imagining la Chica Moderna: Women, Nation, and Visual Culture in Mexico, 1917–1936." American Historical Review 114 (April 2009): 463–464-463–464.

Olcott, J. "Historia de las mujeres en España y América Latina (4 vols.)." Gender and History 21 (April 2009): 220-22.

Francois, ME, and Olcott JH, . "A Culture of Everyday Credit: Housekeeping, Pawnbroking, and Governance in Mexico City, 1750-1920." Journal of Latin American Studies (2007).

Grever, M, Waaldijk, B, and Olcott JH, . "Transforming the Public Sphere: The Dutch National Exhibition of Women’s Labor in 1898." Labor History 47 (February 2006): 138-40.

Olcott, JH. "The Passion of María Elena." The Americas 62 (July 2005): 147-49.


Olcott, J. "From the time of creation: Legacies and unfinished business from the first International Women's Year Conference." Women and Girls Rising: Progress and Resistance around the World. June 19, 2015. 21-31. Full Text

Olcott, J. "A happier marriage? Feminist history takes the transnational turn." Making Women's Histories: Beyond National Perspectives. December 1, 2013. 237-258.

Olcott, J. "Transnational Feminism: Event, Temporality, and Performance at the 1975 International Women’s Year Conference." Cultures in Motion. Ed. DT Rodgers. Princeton University Press, 2013.

Olcott, J. "The Battle within the Home." Workers Across the Americas: The Transnational Turn in Labor History. May 1, 2011. Full Text

Olcott, J. "The Battle within the Home: Development Strategies and the Commodification of Caring Labors at the 1975 International Women’s Year Conference." Workers Across the Americas: The Transnational Turn in Labor History. Ed. L Fink and E al. Oxford University Press, 2011. (Essay)

Olcott, J. "The Politics of Opportunity: Mexican Populism under Lázaro Cárdenas and Luis Echeverría." Gender and Populism in Latin America: Passionate Politics. Ed. K Kampwirth. Pennsylvania State University Press, 2010. (Essay)

Olcott, J. "Globalizing Sisterhood: International Women’s Year and the Limits of Identity Politics." Shock of the Global. Ed. N Ferguson, C Maier, E Manela, and D Sargent. Harvard University Press, 2010. (Essay)

Olcott, J. "Mueras y Mantanzas: Spectacles of Terror and Violence in Postrevolutionary Mexico." A Century of Revolution: Insurgent and Counterinsurgent Violence during Latin America’s Long Cold War. Ed. G Grandin and GM Joseph. Duke University Press, 2010. (Essay)