Courtney Sato is Mellon Assistant Professor in the Department of Studies in Race, Colonialism, and Diaspora at Tufts University. Her interdisciplinary research and teaching engages Asian American Studies, transnational American Studies, intellectual and cultural history, and critical race and gender studies. She holds a Ph.D. in American Studies from Yale University. Prior to joining Tufts, Dr. Sato was a Global American Studies Postdoctoral Fellow at the Charles Warren Center for Studies in American History at Harvard University.
Dr. Sato’s first book, Pacific Internationalism: Interwar Ideologies at the Crossroads of the Pacific, chronicles Pacific-based internationalist movements that arose in the wake of WWI. For internationalists, the region was attractive given its geographic isolation from the devastation of world war, its racial and cultural demography, and Hawai‘i’s status as a U.S. territory. With Honolulu championed as the new “Geneva of the Pacific,” internationalists founded several organizations in Hawai‘i including the Pan-Pacific Union, the Institute of Pacific Relations, and the Pan-Pacific Women’s Association. Pacific internationalism not only marshaled a divergent cadre of reformers, activists, and intellectuals, but deeply reflected and shaped the U.S. settler colonial project in Hawai‘i, Asia, and broader Pacific.
Dr. Sato’s commitment to public-facing scholarship informs her work as a public historian and digital humanities scholar. She serves as Co-Principal Investigator and Project Director for the Out of the Desert initiative at Yale University. Supported by a US National Park Service Japanese American Confinement Sites (JACS) grant, the Out of the Desert digital project interprets World War II Japanese American incarceration history for a broad public audience.