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Gautham Rao

Assistant Professor Department of History

Gautham Rao is a legal historian of revolutionary America and the Early American Republic. He completed his undergraduate and graduate work at the University of Chicago. He has been a postdoctoral fellow at the Library Company of Philadelphia, Samuel I. Golieb Fellow of Legal History at the New York University School of Law, and has served as a visiting professor at the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (EHESS) in Paris. His first book, National Duties: Custom Houses and the Making of the American State will be published by the University of Chicago Press in 2016. His article, "The Federal Posse Comitatus Doctrine: Slavery, Compulsion, and Statecraft in Mid-Nineteenth-Century America," received the Erwin Surrency Award from the American Society for Legal History, and the James Madison Prize from the Society for the History of the Federal Government. He currently serves on the editorial board of Law and History Review. At American University, Rao teaches a wide range of courses, including General Education courses American Encounters and Social Forces that Shaped America, as well as graduate offerings such as Colloquium in U.S. History 1, Research Seminar, and The Historian's Craft.


Ph.D., 2008, University of Chicago M.A., 2002, University of Chicago A.B., 2000, University of Chicago

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CAS - History
Battelle Tompkins - 157
Tuesday 1-4 PM
Contact Info
(202) 885-6745

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For the Media
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  • Spring 2017

    • HIST-500 Studies in History: American Revol to Republic
    • Description
  • Fall 2017

    • GNED-140 General Education Area 4 Topic: Why Big Government
    • Description