Skip to main content

Journal of Policy History now housed at ASU

October 11, 2011

Last fall, the Journal of Policy History made the front page of the New York Times when historian Susan Reverby revealed in a forthcoming article in the journal that the United States government had deliberately infected Guatemalan men with venereal disease in the late 1960s.

Reverby, a professor at Wellesley University, discovered that the Public Health Service had engaged in medical experiments on 700 Guatemalan soldiers, prisons, mental patients, and children by injecting infected fluids into their spines or supplying them with afflicted prostitutes.

This horrendous discovery led Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to apologize officially to the Guatemalan government. President Michael Crow when he saw the story decided that the Journal of Policy History was exactly the kind of journal that should be at Arizona State University. 

Crow, trained in political science, has a deep interest in the history of public policy, as an integrative field bringing together the social sciences and history. One year later, the Journal of Policy History is now housed in ASU's School of Historical, Philosophical, and Religious Studies. 

Now in its twenty-fifth year of publication, the Journal of Policy History, published quarterly by the prestigious Cambridge University Press, brings together historians, social scientists, legal scholars, and economists from across the world in its pages.  Articles have been published by scholars from Great Britain, Japan, France, Germany, and Israel. 

Donald T. Critchlow, the current editor, joined ASU this year as the Barry Goldwater Chair in American Institutions and University Research Professor. He is the author of nineteen books.

"This is an exciting time for the journal,” Critchlow said. “We are pleased to be part of this university as its enters the 21st century.” 

He added that with the support the journal is receiving from ASU, a new stage is being set for future.

Special issues are planned on Disaster Policy in Historical Perspective; Morality, Politics, and Policy; and American Politics and Policy in an Age of Austerity. 

In addition to editing the journal, Critchlow teaches History courses in American Contemporary History since 1974 and The History of Modern American Conservatism. He is working with colleagues in the faculty of history to establish an undergraduate program in political thought and history.

The Journal of Policy History joins another journal brought to SHPRS this year, French Historical Studies. These journals further enhance the university’s growing reputation as a leading international academic institution.