History Department
History Department

Brandon James Render


PhD Candidate
Brandon James Render

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Interests


Twentieth-Century U.S. Social and Intellectual History; Post-1945 Social Movements and Culture Wars; Race and Public Policy

Biography


Brandon James Render is a PhD student in the Department of History at the University of Texas-Austin. He completed his B.A. in History and Social Studies at Western Kentucky University in 2011 and M.A. at Eastern Kentucky University in 2015.

His dissertation, "Colorblind University: Race and Higher Education in the Twentieth-Century," traces the evolution of racial colorblindness through admissions processes, departmental structure, and curriculum design. Through the examination of organizational records, university policies, and legal documents, his dissertation argues that student activism and university policy during the civil rights and Black Power era fundamentally shaped Americans' collective interpretation of race in the mid-twentieth century. "Colorblind University" uses higher education to describe the broader intellectual movement that resulted in racial colorblindness becoming the dominant ideology of race within various American institutions.

In addition to serving as a Teaching Assistant in the History Department, Render is a former Graduate Fellow for the Center for the Study of Race and Democracy, former Supplemental Instruction Leader, and former Adjunct Instructor at Southwestern University. His research has earned support from John Hope Franklin Research Center at Duke University and the Gilder Lehrman Institute. In 2021-22, Render will serve as the Arnold L. Mitchem Dissertation Fellow at Marquette University in Milwaukee, WI, where he will be a member of the History Department.