New Deal / WPA Dissertations

The following list of dissertations is not meant to be comprehensive! Some of these dissertations might be available through interlibrary loan or for purchase at UMI ProQuest ( You can search at UMI ProQuest for citations and abstracts in the Dissertation Abstracts database for the past two years. To search the entire database of more than 1.6 million titles, you will need to connect from a subscription institution.

Also, the Archives of American Art maintain a dissertation page at:

Please let me know if you wish your own dissertation included in this list or if you have a favorite source for dissertation information.

"Adult Education as a Welfare Measure During the Great Depression: a Historical Case Study of the Educational Program of the Civilian Conservation Corps, 1933--1942"
Charles Frederick Ralston, D.Ed
The Pennsylvania State University, 2000, 443 Pages

"All of this Music Belongs to the Nation: the Federal Music Project of the WPA and American Cultural Nationalism, 1935-1939"
Kenneth J. Bindas, Ph.D
The University of Toledo, 1988, 309 Pages

"Art Collecting at the University of Illinois: a History and Catalogue"
Muriel Scheinman, Ph.D
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 1981, 592 Pages

"Art for a Democracy: the WPA's Art Education Programs in Minnesota, 1935-1943"
Susan Ray Euler, Ph.D
University of Minnesota, 1990, 335 Pages

"Art for a People: an Iconographic and Cultural Study of Mural Painting in Minnesota's New Deal Art Programs"
Kathleen McCarney, Art History, Senior Honors Thesis
College of St. Benedict - St. Johns University, 1994

"Art Moderne Architecture in the Long Beach, California Unified School District"
Diane R. Threadgill, MA
California State University, Dominguez Hills, 1999, 73 Pages

"Artists Respond to the Great Depression and the Threat of Fascism: the New York Artists' Union and its Magazine 'Art Front' (1934-1937)"
Francine Tyler, Ph.D
New York University, 1991, 427 Pages

"The Artists Union of New York"
Gerald M. Monroe, Ph.D.
New York University, 1949

"The Arts and the Community: an Exploratory Study of Community Arts Councils In Their American Cultural Context"
Mindy C. Reiser, Ph.D
Brandeis U., the F. Heller Grad. Sch. For Adv. Stud. In Soc. Wel., 1981, 552 Pages

"A Biographical Dictionary of Painters and Sculptors in Illinois: 1808-1945"
Esther Sparks, Ph.D.
Northwestern University, 1971

"Constituting 1930s America: The Elusive Realisms of Archibald Motley, Jr., and Reginald Marsh"
Phoebe Wolfskill, Ph.D.
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, n.d.

"Creating for El Diablo a Pie: the Hispana and Hispano Artists of the Works Progress Administration in New Mexico"
Tey Marianna Nunn, Ph.D
The University of New Mexico, 1998, 438 Pages

"Cultural Nationalism in an Urban Setting: the Philadelphia Experience with Federal Project Number One of the Works Progress Administration, 1935-1943 (Pennsylvania)"
Arthur Robert Jarvis, Jr., Ph.D
The Pennsylvania State University, 1995, 688 Pages

"Dangerous Theatre: the Federal Theatre Project as a Forum for New Plays"
George Kazacoff, Ph.D
New York University, 1987, 369 Pages

"Dreaming America: Politics and Childhood on the Federal Theatre Project Stage"
Leslie Elaine Frost, Ph.D
The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 2000, 251 Pages

"Educating America: Mural Painting and Public Schools in Chicago, 1905-1941"
Sylvia Rhor, Ph.D.
University of Pittsburgh, 2004

"The Educational Program of the Federal Art Project"
Paul Ira Kornfeld, Ed.D
Illinois State University, 1981, 191 Pages

"Egalitarian Ideals, Transient Opportunities: Social Realist Printmakers in New York City During the New Deal Era"
Helen Susan Langa, Ph.D
The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 1993, 372 Pages

"Elizabeth Green: a Patronage Portrait (American Art History, Dr. John Green, John Fiske, Holger Cahill, Edward S. Morse, St. Louis, Missouri)"
Richard D. Wells, Ph.D
Saint Louis University, 1985, 250 Pages

"Ethnicity and the New Deal: Italian Language Theatre Sponsored by the Federal Theatre Project in Boston, 1935-1939 (Massachusetts)"
Christopher Charles Newton, Ph.D
Tufts University, 1994, 188 Pages

"Eugene O'Neill and the Federal Theatre Project"
Leslie White, Ph.D
New York University, 1986, 394 Pages

"The Federal Art Project: A Government Folly?"
George J. Mavigliano, M.A.
Northern Illinois University, 1967

"The Federal Dance Theatre in New York City: Legislative and Administrative Obstacles (Federal Theater Project, Arts Legislation, Theater Administration)"
Kim C. Friedman, MA
The American University, 1992, 147 Pages

"The Federal Government and the Democratization of Public Recreational Sport: New York City, 1933-43"
Judith Anne Davidson, Ph.D
University of Massachusetts, 1983, 322 Pages

"Federal Prints and Democratic Culture: the Graphic Arts Division of the Works Progress Administration Federal Art Project, 1935--1943"
Elizabeth Gaede Seaton, Ph.D
Northwestern University, 2000, 364 Pages

"The Federal Theatre in Dallas: a New Deal for Theatre (Texas)"
Marion Rhett Walters, MA
Texas Woman's University, 1996, 178 Pages

"The Federal Theatre Project in Georgia and Alabama: an Historical Analysis Of Government Theatre in the Deep South (Hallie Flanagan)"
John Russell Poole, Ph.D
University of Georgia, 1995, 224 Pages

"The Federal Writers' Project's Mirror to America: the Florida Reflection (Federal Writers' Project)"
Pamela G. Bordelon, , Ph.D
The Louisiana State University and Agricultural and Mechanical Col., 1991, 294 Pages

"The First Federal Summer Theatre: Retraining for the New American Theatre (Works Progress Administration)"
Michael J. Slavin, Ph.D
Bowling Green State University, 1995, 210 Pages

"Government Investigations of Federal Theatre Project Personnel in the Works Progress Administration, 1935-1939 (The Show must Not Go On.) (Communist, Investigations)"
Judith Ellen Brussell, Ph.D
City University of New York, 1993, 381 Pages

"Guy Maccoy: The WPA Mural Program and the Aesthetics of Female Labor"
Kay Frost, Masters Thesis
University of Colorado, Boulder, n.d.

"Hallie Flanagan and the Federal Theatre Project: an Experiment in Form"
Cheryl Dianne Swiss, Ph.D
The University of Wisconsin - Madison, 1982, 205 Pages

"Harold H. Burton, Mayor of Cleveland: the WPA Program, 1935-1937"
Charles Dennis Dunfee, Ph.D
Case Western Reserve University, 1975, 387 Pages

"The History of the Artworks in the Fort Ord Soldiers' Club, California"
Jeanne Truesdale Myers, MA
San Jose State University, 1996, 127 Pages

"Ideology and Government Participation in the Arts: the WPA Federal Art Project in Tennessee (Regionalism)"
Helen Ann Beckstrom Townsend, Ph.D
Vanderbilt University, 1985, 272 Pages

"Ilya Bolotowsky: a Study of His Painting and an Examination of His Relationship to the Development of Abstract Art in the United States. (Volumes I-IV) (WPA Murals)"
Sandra Kraskin, Ph.D
University of Minnesota, 1993, 592 Pages

"Jacob Lawrence (New York; Harlem; Art Workshops; WPA)"
Ellen Harkins Wheat, Ph.D
University of Washington, 1987, 477 Pages

"John Cotton Dana, Edgar Holger Cahill, and Dorothy C. Miller: Three Art Educators (Newark Museum, New Jersey, Moma, New York, WPA)"
Alix Sandra Schnee, Ed.D
Columbia University Teachers College, 1987, 234 Pages

"The Lost Years: Mural Painting in New York City under the Works Progress Administration's Federal Art Project, 1935-1943"
Greta Berman, Ph.D
Columbia University, 1975, 437 Pages

"The Massachusetts Federal Art Project: a Case Study in Government Support For Art"
Edith Ann Tonelli, Ph.D
Boston University Graduate School, 1981, 410 Pages

"Mexican Muralism without Walls: The Critical Reception of Portable Work by Orozco, Rivera, and Siqueiros in the United States, 1927-1940"
Anna Indych, Ph.D.
Institute of Fine Arts, New York University, 2004.

"New Deal Art: the Section of Fine Arts Program in the Great Plains States"
Sally Bradstreet Soelle, Ph.D
The University of Oklahoma, 1993, 332 Pages

"The New Deal Art Projects in Cincinnati (Ohio)"
Beverly Jean Rosenthal, MA
University of Cincinnati, 1993, 191 Pages

"The New Deal in Norwalk, Ct: a Case Study of a Small City in America During The Great Depression (Connecticut, Franklin D. Roosevelt)"
Courtney Beth Dwyer, MA
Southern Connecticut State University, 2003, 112 Pages

"New Deal, Old Pork: the Politics and Economics of Federal Emergency Relief Spending During the Great Depression"
Jim Forrest Couch, Ph.D
The University of Mississippi, 1995, 337 Pages

"The New Deal and the Sculptor: a Study of Federal Relief to the Sculptor on The New York City Federal Art Project of the Works Progress Administration, 1935-1943"
Eleanor M. Carr, Ph.D
New York University, 1969, 246 Pages

"A New Deal for Women: Women Artists and the Federal Art Project, 1935-1939 (Artists, New York City)"
Kimn Carlton-Smith, Ph.D
Rutgers the State University of New Jersey - New Brunswick, 1990, 347 Pages

"A New Deal for Workers' Education: the Workers' Service Program under the Federal Emergency Relief Administration and the Works Progress Administration, 1933-1942 (WPA, FERA)"
Joyce Lewis Kornbluh, Ph.D
The University of Michigan, 1983, 331 Pages

"Nine Years of Federally Sponsored Art in Chicago: 1933-1942"
Clark Sommer Smith, M.A.
University of Chicago, 1965

"The 'Other' American Scene: Charles W. White's 'Card Players' in the Context of the 1930s"
Alona Mary Horn, MA
California State University, Long Beach, 1999, 82 Pages

"Painting a Theoretical World: Stuart Davis and the Politics of Common Experience in the 1930s"
John Xavier Christ, Ph.D.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 2004

"Pollock's Early Work, 1930-1939"
Erica Somerwitz, Masters Thesis
University of South Carolina, n.d.

"Preserving Art Music in the Mountain State: a Study of the West Virginia Federal Music Project Orchestras, 1935--1939"
Travis D. Stimeling, MM
West Virginia University, 2003, 118 Pages

"The Reluctant Patron: the United States Government and the Arts, 1943-1965"
Gary Otto Larson, Ph.D
University of Minnesota, 1981, 511 Pages

"Revealing and Rewriting America: African American Male Identity in the Work of Romare Bearden and Robert Colescott"
Susan Allan, Masters Thesis
American University, 2003.

"Robert Blackburn: American Printmaker"
Deborah T. Cullen, Ph.D
City University of New York, 2002, 314 Pages

"Romare Bearden: a Creative Mythology"
Mary Schmidt Campbell, Ph.D
Syracuse University, 1982, 610 Pages

"Romuald Kraus: 'Justice' and Other Work for the Works Progress Administration, 1933-1943 (Newark, New Jersey)"
Eddie-Sue Mcdowell, MA
University of Louisville, 1992, 112 Pages

"Roots of African-American Art: the Early Years Through the 1930s (Harlem Renaissance, New York)"
Carole Ann Challberg Hubbard, Ph.D
The Pennsylvania State University, 1987, 143 Pages

"Sargent Claude Johnson: the Intersection Between a Double Consciousness and The Ideals of Modernism"
Lizzetta Lefalle-Collins, Ph.D
University of California, Los Angeles, 1997, 173 Pages

"Some Social Trends in WPA Drama"
Clarence J. Wittler, Ph.D
The Catholic University of America, 1940

"The Struggle for Administrative and Artistic Control of the Federal Theatre Negro Units"
Tina Redd, Ph.D
University of Washington, 1996, 302 Pages

"A Study of the History of the WPA Nursery Schools of Boston (Massachusetts)"
Annette Moser Hodess, Ed.D
Boston University School of Education, 1983, 153 Pages

"The Tax Payers' Murals"
Erica Beckh Rubenstein, Ph.D.
Harvard University, 1944

"Timberline Lodge: a WPA Experiment in Architecture and Crafts. (Volumes One And Two)"
Jean Burwell Weir, Ph.D
The University of Michigan, 1977, 513 Pages

"Treasury Art Programs: The New Deal and the American Artist, 1933-1943"
Belisario Contreras, Ph.D.
American University, 1967

"The WPA Federal Music Project in Los Angeles, 1935-1942: Three Performing Units (California)"
Wendell William Greenlee, Jr., MA
California State University, Los Angeles, 1987, 118 Pages

"The WPA Mural Projects: the Effects of Constraints on Artistic Freedom (United States, Mexico, Censorship)"
Charles William Boyens, Ed.D
Columbia University Teachers College, 1984, 231 Pages

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