Tracy Leavelle

Tracy Leavelle, PhD

Tracy Leavelle, PhD
Associate Dean for Humanities and Fine Arts

Humanities Center 216

Tracy Leavelle

Tracy Leavelle is Associate Dean for Humanities and Fine Arts in the College of Arts and Sciences. He is also an associate professor of history, Director of the Creighton Digital Humanities Initiative, and Interim Director of the Native American Studies Program. His first book, The Catholic Calumet: Colonial Conversions in French and Indian North America (Penn, 2011), is a study of conversion as cross-cultural practice in the Jesuit missions and Native communities of the Great Lakes and Mississippi Valley. He is currently working on a new project that examines the crucial links between the labor of missionaries and the rapidly growing scientific enterprise that supported the ambitious project of American expansion into the Pacific in the nineteenth century.


PhD (2001), Arizona State University
AB (1992), Dartmouth College

Courses Taught

The Native American World
United States History to 1877
Theories and Methods in American Studies
Discovering Paradise in the Pacific


The Catholic Calumet: Colonial Conversions in French and Indian North America (Penn, 2011).

Pacific Currents and American Empires: Religious and Scientific Awakenings in the Nineteenth Century (in progress)

Religion and U.S. Empire, co-edited with Sylvester Johnson (in progress)

Recent Articles

The Perils of Pluralism: Colonization and Decolonization in American Indian Religious History” in After Pluralism: Rethinking Models of Interreligious Engagement, eds. Courtney Bender and Pamela Klassen (New York: Columbia University Press, 2010), pp. 156-77.

“The Catholic Rosary, Gendered Practice, and Female Power in French-Indian Spiritual Encounters” in Native Americans, Christianity, and the Reshaping of Early America's Religious Landscape, eds. Joel Martin and Mark Nicholas (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2010), pp. 159-76.

‘Bad Things’ and ‘Good Hearts’: Mediation, Meaning, and the Language of Illinois Christianity,” Church History: Studies in Christianity and Culture 76 (June 2007): 363-94.

“Geographies of Encounter: Religion and Contested Spaces in Colonial North America,” American Quarterly 56 (December 2004): 913-43. [Reprinted in Major Problems in American Immigration History, eds. Mae Ngai and Jon Gjerde, 2d ed. (Wadsworth Publishing, 2012)].

French and Spanish Missions in North America, with John Corrigan (and Art Remillard), published by the California Digital Library for the Electronic Cultural Atlas Initiative (Berkeley, 2004).


Creighton College of Arts & Sciences Award for Professional Excellence in Teaching (2009)