Project Staff



Catherine Cymone Fourshey, Ph.D. / Principal Investigator

Catherine Cymone Fourshey is Associate Professor of History and International Relations at Bucknell University. Fourshey's published research focuses on histories of gender, agriculture, hospitality, migration, and the intersections of environment, economy, and politics in precolonial Tanzania. She has conducted research and published on gender in Africa, both in precolonial and colonial spaces. Fourshey recently completed a co-authored manuscript entitled Bantu Africa, which is being published by Oxford University Press. She is completing a book manuscript entitled Strangers, Immigrants and the Established: Hospitality as State Building Mechanism in Southwest Tanzania 300-1900 CE. Additionally, Fourshey has two newer research projects. The first is on the history of immigrants/refugees in Tanzania who are known in international aid and development circles as "the Bantu Somali." The second is a collaboration that examines precolonial gender ideologies and practices in central and eastern Africa. She has been a recipient of research grants and fellowships from the American Association of University Women, Fulbright, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and Notre Dame University. She is from Marin County, California, and holds a B.A. in political science and an M.A. and Ph.D. in history from UCLA.



Rhonda Gonzalez, Ph.D. / Principal Investigator

Rhonda M. Gonzales is an Associate Professor of African and African Diaspora History and Director of PIVOT for Academic Success at The University of Texas at San Antonio. The National Endowment for the Humanities, Andrew Mellon Foundation, Ford Foundation, and The American Historical Association have supported her comparative historical linguistic and archival research on women their roles in sustaining and transforming society through religion, medicine and economy in both precolonial Africa and in the African Diaspora in Mexico. She is author of Societies, Religion, and History: Central East Tanzanians and the World They Created, c. 200 BCE to 1800 CE. Bantu Africa, 3500 BCE-1500 CE, a co-authored title, is forthcoming with OUP. Gonzales is an American Council on Education Fellow. As a first-generation college graduate, she is passionate about envisioning and implementing programming and best practices to support first-generation, transition, low SES, and STEM student retention through graduation. She is the PI for a $3.25 million Department of Education Title-V Grant to build four student success programs at UTSA: F2G&G, RTE, Alamo Runners, and Math Matters. She is from Long Beach, California. She holds a B.A. in sociology and an M.A. and Ph.D. in history from UCLA.



Christine A. Saidi, Ph.D. / Principal Investigator

Christine A. Saidi is an Associate Professor of African and World History at Kutztown University. Saidi is the recipient of three prestigious Fulbright fellowships, a Social Science Research Council grant, a Woodrow Wilson Women's Studies grant, and a National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship. She was instrumental in establishing the Center for the Study of Gender in Africa at the African Studies Center at UCLA. She conducted research in Somalia and in the White Fathers' Archive, Rome, and later in Zambia and the COngo, as a Senior Fulbright Scholar. She has authored many scholarly articles and a book, coauthored a book, and is currently writing a coauthored textbook on the history of African women. She is from Los Angeles, California, and she received a B.A. in history, an M.A. in African Area Studies, and a Ph.D. in history from UCLA.



Troy E. Spier / Linguist Consultant

Biography