Alfred Kelly

Alfred Kelly
Alfred Kelly

Edgar B. Graves Professor of History Emeritus and Senior Lecturer in History

List Arts Center 128

Alfred Kelly's publications include The Descent of Darwin: The Popularization of Darwinism in Germany, 1860-1914 (1981) and The German Worker: Working-Class Autobiographies From the Age of Industrialization (1987). He is currently researching a book titled Remembering and Forgetting: The Legacy of the Franco-Prussian War in Imperial Germany, 1871-1914. Kelly recently completed the manuscript With my Rucksack: The Unvarnished Campaign Memoirs of an Infantryman from the Year 1870 by Carl Rückert. He earned his doctorate from the University of Wisconsin.

Recent Courses Taught

  • History of European Thought 1600-1830
  • History of European Thought 1830-Present
  • Darwin and the Darwinian Age
  • Nietzsche and his Influence
  • Marx and the European Left
  • Origins of Modern Social Theory (with Dan Chambliss)
  • The Philosophy of History
  • Germany 1789-Present (also as Germany 1789-1918, Germany 1918-Present)
  • Nazi Germany
  • The Holocaust
  • Origins of Scientific Thought
  • Foundations of Modern Society
  • Europe Since 1815

Research Interests

  • Modern European cultural and intellectual history
  • Modern German history


  • National Humanities Center Fellowship, 1996-97; declined
  • National Endowment for the Humanities, Fellowship for College Teachers and Independent Scholars, 1989-90
  • Gertrude Flesh Bristol Fellowship, Hamilton College, 1989-90
  • Margaret Bundy Scott Fellowship, Hamilton College, 1985-86
  • National Endowment for the Humanities, Translations Programs Grant, summer, 1982, 1983

Selected Publications

  • The Descent of Darwin: The Popularization of Darwinism in Germany 1860-1914. The University of North Carolina Press, 1981
  • The German Worker: Working-Class Autobiographies from the Age of Industrialization. The University of California Press, 1987

College Service

  • Committee on Academic Standing, 2013-16
  • Mellon Curricular Leader, 2009-11
  • Faculty Committee on Admission and Financial Aid, 2003-06; chair, 2005-06
  • Academic Council, 2003-06; ex officio, 1998-2001, 1986-89
  • Chair of the college faculty, 1998-2001; 1986-89
  • Chair, History Department, 1988-93; spring 1996
  • Committee on Appointments, 1991-94; chair, 1993-94
  • Presidential Search Committee, 1987-88
  • Committee on Academic Policy, 1984-87

Appointed to the Faculty: 1981

Educational Background

Ph.D., University of Wisconsin
M.A., University of Wisconsin
B.A., University of Chicago

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