American Council of Learned Societies (ACLS) New Faculty Fellow (Visiting Assistant Professor)
Ph.D.: The University of Chicago, 2010
Department Member Since: 2011
Aaron Shkuda’s research and teaching focus on urban history and the postwar United States. Specifically, he is interested in the role that arts and culture play in urban development, and why artists are so closely associated with gentrification.
His current book project, “Lofts and the Origins of Gentrification: Artists and Industry in SoHo, New York, 1950-1980” centers on the neighborhood where artists first turned former industrial buildings into lofts. In SoHo, artists used their marketing savvy and political connections to legalize this new form of housing and promote it to the public. Through their actions, artists inadvertently created one of the postwar era’s first gentrified neighborhoods and a model for urban development used in cities throughout the country and the world. The project also explores the development of gentrified retail districts: areas where restaurants and boutiques that cater to artistic tourists open near galleries and artist residences. He is currently working on a second project that examines the transformation of central business districts across the United States under the twin banners of culture and residence.
Originally form New York, Aaron earned his undergraduate and graduate degrees in history from the University of Chicago. He previously worked as a policy associate for an organization that advocated for policies affecting low-income families in Illinois, and as a middle school baseball coach. For the past five years, Aaron has also been heavily involved in student life as a Resident Head in a college residence hall. He is halfway through his slow quest to visit all 30 Major League ballparks and has completed seven marathons and three Olympic distance triathlons.
|20th Century U.S.|
|Bohemians and Other Cultural Rebels|
|Gentrification: Race and Class in Urban History|
|Recent U.S. History 1945-Present|
|Urban Crisis, Urban Renewal and Gentrification|
Department of History
Wean Hall 8105