Hillary Rodham Clinton Chair of Women’s History

In 2020 St John’s was delighted to announce that the newly established Hillary Rodham Clinton Chair of Women’s History – the first professorship of its kind in the English-speaking world – was to be held in conjunction with a Fellowship at St John’s. The inaugural holder of this post will be Professor Brenda Stevenson, an extremely distinguished historian of sex, race, and politics, who is currently at UCLA; Brenda will take up her post in September. 

This is a highly prestigious post in Oxford and also a very important one for St John’s, as it will be the College’s first Professorial Fellowship in History. Beyond being a tremendous boost to History in the College, already one of our strengths, it is particularly pleasing that the post was created in a year which commemorated both a century of women’s formal admission to the University and also the 40th anniversary of women being admitted to St John’s. 

The Chair itself comes to St John’s fully funded through external philanthropy, and the College now seeks to endow two new graduate scholarships in History at St John’s to work alongside the Chair. We hope to raise a total of £1.5m to create these new awards which will be open to the best scholars in the field. If you would be interested in discussing this initiative please contact Robert Crow by emailing robert.crow@sjc.ox.ac.uk.

Professor Brenda Stevenson, the incoming holder of the Hillary Rodham Clinton Chair of Women’s History gives her own view on why scholarships are so important for this post. 

Brenda Stevenson.jpgGrowing up in a small southern town in a segregated, working class community and then moving on to be among the first generation in my family to attend college, I could not imagine that I would have the great fortune  and blessing to one day serve as the inaugural recipient of the Hillary Rodham Clinton Chair of Women’s History at the most magnificent university in the world. I am truly humbled by this extraordinary opportunity and honour. 

As I look forward to moving to Oxford in the autumn of 2021, I am anxious to embrace and expand the history-making efforts at the university to not only further embrace women’s history and all that it does to enlighten and inform social, political, economic and cultural progress worldwide, but to truly be a global leader in this effort. 

To that purpose, I want to assure you that one of the most significant contributions that can be made to support Oxford’s distinction in these initiatives is to provide graduate student funding for those exceptionally bright minds to be able to evolve and contribute to the intellectual and social imperative that is women’s history. 

As a grateful recipient of scholarships my entire career, I know personally how absolutely essential financial support is to encouraging the brightest and best among us to dedicate their lives to scholarly endeavours that will have positive impact on our university community and our larger society. The Hillary Rodham Clinton Chair at St John’s needs this kind of student support in order to fulfil its great potential as a true game-changer in women’s history and gender-equity in our society.

" I want to assure you that one of the most significant contributions that can be made to support Oxford’s distinction in these initiatives is to provide graduate student funding for those exceptionally bright minds to be able to evolve and contribute to the intellectual and social imperative that is women’s history. " Professor Brenda Stevenson, Inaugural Hillary Rodham Clinton Chair of Women's History

 If you would be interested in discussing this initiative please contact Robert Crow by emailing robert.crow@sjc.ox.ac.uk.