All twelve members of the American Studies Department’s core faculty hold doctorates from leading universities in their fields of specialization: Anthropology, Religion, Visual Studies, History, Ethnic Studies, Literature, Film/Media, Comparative Arts, and American Studies. Most of them have published and lectured on both American and non-American topics or indigenous cultures and societies. Their writings have been translated into (or originally written in) French, Spanish, German, Italian, Portuguese, Turkish, Japanese, Thai, Vietnamese, Chinese, Korean, and Hawaiian. In addition, they have taught or lectured in most of those places as well as in Ireland, England, the Netherlands, Jamaica, Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic, Barbados, Antigua, Canada, New Zealand, Australia, Cambodia, Myanmar (Burma), Laos, Micronesia, the Marshall Islands, Guam, Taiwan, the Philippines, and elsewhere.
The interdisciplinary scholarship of the UH American Studies faculty has resulted in their serving on doctoral committees in nineteen different departments throughout the university, while the quality of that scholarship has been acknowledged with Guggenheim, Rockefeller, National Endowment for the Arts, National Endowment for the Humanities, American Council of Learned Societies, Soros/Open Society, Social Science Research Council, Ford, Radcliffe, and numerous Fulbright and other fellowships. American Studies faculty members have received the highest undergraduate teaching and graduate mentorship awards given by the university. And most of them are deeply involved in community affairs and/or activism, including concerns with prisoner rights, environmental protection, gay and lesbian issues, labor struggles, racial conflict, educational reform, public history and the arts, ethnic communities, indigenous rights, and more.
The American Studies faculty is among the most diverse at UH in terms of gender and ethnicity. EEO/AA statistics show that the department has a 37 percent higher representation of female faculty and a 39 percent higher representation of minority faculty than the campus as a whole. A recent university poll of students in the College of Arts and Humanities found that 95 percent of American Studies students praised the department for fostering “a climate of respect for diversity of backgrounds, ideas, and perspectives” and for providing “a safe learning environment free from harassment or coercion.”