Announcements

Fall 2020- UCSB Regent’s Dissertation Fellowship 

Winter/Spring 2021- UCSB Center for Cold War Studies Fellowship, Graduate Student Assistant 

 

Personal Statement:

I am a PhD candidate working with Dr. Salim Yaqub on 20th century U.S. Foreign Relations. I am particularly interested in examining the intersections between foreign policy and popular culture during the World War II and Cold War eras. My work also incorporates themes of race and ethnicity and gender and sexuality. 

My dissertation, tentatively titled “Blowing in the Wind: Dissent, Counterculture, and American Soldiers in Vietnam,” examines and analyzes the intersections of foreign policy and popular culture by situating the experiences of American soldiers during the Vietnam War alongside the Antiwar, Women’s Rights, Chicano, Asian American, and Black Power countercultural movements of the 1960s and 1970s. It explores the various mediums through which the counterculture reached men and women of diverse racial, ethnic, and class backgrounds serving in Vietnam, and how these movements impacted both soldiers’ attitudes towards the war and their postwar re-assimilation into American society.

Previous projects have explored similar themes. In “Grunt Free Press: The Vietnam War and America’s ‘Crisis of Masculinity,'” I explore the experiences of American soldiers in the Vietnam War through the lens of an underground magazine, Grunt Free Press. The magazine, which circulated between 1968 and 1972, was written and published by American soldiers, for American soldiers. Within the pages of Grunt Free Press, soldiers wrestled with conflicting stereotypes of Asian women, interracial relationships between Vietnamese women and American soldiers, their responsibilities to Amerasian children, and stateside countercultural movements. Among these countercultural movements were the burgeoning feminist movement and antiwar movement, both of which represented a challenge to traditional notions of masculinity. By examining the attitudes of Grunt Free Press towards each of these topics, the paper seeks to understand how American men’s conceptions of masculinity evolved over the course of the war.

I am also interested in issues of race and ethnicity. In “‘You Want to See What the Enemy Looks Like?’: Asian American Experiences During the Vietnam War,” I examine the experiences of Asian American soldiers in the Vietnam War by focusing on how, and to what extent, conceptions of masculinity colored their time in Vietnam. The project follows the soldiers from their entry into the military, through their tours in-country, and to their post-war civilian lives. To fully understand how conceptions of masculinity colored the experiences of Asian American soldiers in the Vietnam War, the work also examines the United States’ long tradition of feminizing Asians and Asian Americans alongside the nascent Asian American movement of the 1960s. By examining this surge of Asian American identity alongside the Vietnam War, the paper aims to better understand the unique experiences of Asian American soldiers fighting a racialized war.

My focus on the intersections of foreign relations and issues of race and ethnicity first began when I wrote my senior thesis, “Turning ‘The Dust of Life’ Into Gold: Amerasian Agency within the United States.” The project focused on the immigration of Vietnamese Amerasians (the children that resulted from the relationships between American soldiers and Vietnamese women during the Vietnam War) from Vietnam to the United States. 

I am on fellowship for the 2020-2021 academic year. I can be reached at addisonmjensen@ucsb.edu.  

Courses Taught:

2019-2020 academic year- Lead Teaching Assistant 

Spring 2019: History 17C (Yaqub)

Winter 2019: History 17B (Stephens)

Fall 2018: History 17A (Maar)

Spring 2018: History 17C (Kalman)

Winter 2018: History 17B (Perrone)

Fall 2017: History 17A (Maar)

Spring 2017: History 17C (Yaqub)

Winter 2017: History 17B (Jacobson)

Fall 2016: History 17A (Warkentin)

Awards & Professional Activities:

Center for Cold War Studies and International History Fellowship, Graduate Student Assistant (Winter and Spring 2021) 

UCSB History Regent’s Dissertation Fellowship (Fall 2020)

Lead Teaching Assistant, UCSB History Department (2019-2020)

Center for Cold War Studies and International History Fellowship, Graduate Student Assistant (Winter and Spring 2020) 

Program Committee Member, Pacific Coast Branch of the American Historical Association (2018-2021)

UCSB History Department Research Travel Grant (Spring 2019 and 2020)

UCSB History Regent’s Dissertation Fellowship (Fall 2019)

DeConde/Burns Prize, Outstanding Accomplishment in U.S. Foreign Relations, UCSB History Department (2019)

UCSB History Department Conference Travel Grant (Spring 2018)

History Department Recruiting Fellowship (2015-2016)