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Dr. Joel Rhodes

Professor of History

Joel P. Rhodes is a Professor in the History Department of Southeast Missouri State University. Raised in Kansas, he earned a B.S. in Education from the University of Kansas before earning his M.A. and Ph.D. in History from the University of Missouri-Kansas City.

His teaching and research interests are in Cold War-era American political and social history and the history of children and childhood. Dr. Rhodes has written The Sixties in the Lives of American Children: Growing Up in a Land Called Honalee, The Voice of Violence: Performative Violence as Protest in the Vietnam Era, and A Missouri Railroad Pioneer: the Life of Louis Houck. An avid storytelling enthusiast, he has also written Haunted Cape Girardeau: Where the River Turns a Thousand Chilling Tales and co-authored Historic Cape Girardeau: an Illustrated History. His articles and chapters have appeared in On the Ground: The Black Panther Party in Communities Across America, Girlhood in America: An Encyclopedia, and the Missouri Historical Review. Dr. Rhodes has also delivered papers at the American Historical Association (AHA) annual meeting, and international conferences hosted by the Society for the History of Children and Youth (SHCY) and the Society for the Study of Childhood in the Past (SSCIP). He is currently researching and writing a book on the Vietnam War in the lives of American children.

Dr. Rhodes serves, or has served, on a number of Boards of Directors including the Missouri Humanities Council, the State Historical Records Advisory Board (appointed by Governor Jay Nixon), Missouri Association for Museums and Archives, National Digital Newspaper Program in Missouri Advisory Board, Colonial Fox Theatre Foundation (Pittsburg, Kansas), The Historical Association of Greater Cape Girardeau, The Stars & Stripes Museum/Library Association, and co-produced the Cape Girardeau Storytelling Festival.

He lives in Cape Girardeau with his wife Jeanie and his three children.