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Christopher Tounsel

Christopher Tounsel

Assistant Professor of History and African Studies

403 Weaver Building
University Park , PA 16802

Curriculum Vitae

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  1. PhD, University of Michigan, 2015
  2. MA, University of Michigan, 2011
  3. BA, Duke University, 2009


Christopher Tounsel is an historian of modern Sudan, with particular interests in race and religion as political technologies. His book Chosen Peoples: Christianity and Political Imagination in South Sudan is under contract with Duke University Press. It focuses on the ways Southern Sudanese intellectuals used Judeo-Christian Scriptures to frame their revolutionary work against the state.

 Tounsel's work has appeared in several peer-reviewed journals and the online media platform The Conversation. He is currently a Woodrow Wilson Career Enhancement Fellow and is on leave for the Fall 2019 semester.

 Recent Publications

“Negro Canaan: Tuskegee, Cotton, and the Anglo-Egyptian Sudan” Journal of African-American History 105, no. 1 (2020) [forthcoming]

 ‘Before the Bright Star: Football in the Anglo-Egyptian Sudan’ Journal of Eastern African Studies 12, no. 4 (2018): 735-753

“Render to Caesar”: Missionary Thought and the Sudanese State, 1946-1964’ Social Sciences and Missions 34, no. 2 (2018): 341-374.

‘Race, religion and resistance: revelations from the Juba archive’ Journal of Eastern African Studies 11, No. 2 (2017): 249-265.

‘Khartoum Goliath: SPLM/SPLA Update and Martial Theology during the Second Sudanese Civil War’ Journal of Africana Religions 4, no. 2 (2016): 129-153.     

Awards and Services

2019 Career Enhancement Junior Faculty Fellowship, Woodrow Wilson National Foundation

2015 Doris G. Quinn Fellowship, Doris G. Quinn Foundation

2014-2015 Mellon-Mays Undergraduate Fellows Dissertation Grant, Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation and Andrew W. Mellon Foundation

2013 Rackham Humanities Candidacy Fellowship, University of Michigan

2012 Multi-Country Fellowship, Council of American Overseas Research Centers

Areas of Specialization: