Participant Info

First Name
Last Name
University of Delaware
Website URL
consumer culture, housework, marketing, trash, medicinal herbs
Additional Contact Information

Personal Info

About Me



Susan Strasser is a historian of everyday life in a developing consumer culture, praised by the New Yorker for “retrieving what history discards: the taken-for-granted minutiae of everyday life.” Her books Never Done: A History of American HouseworkSatisfaction Guaranteed: The Making of the American Mass Market, and Waste and Want: A Social History of Trashhave won awards for contributions to women’s history, business history, and environmental history, and were translated into Italian, Korean, and Japanese. She is Richards Professor Emerita of American History at the University of Delaware, and has also taught at The Evergreen State College, George Washington University, Princeton University, and the Bard Graduate Center. Her work has been supported by fellowships from many sources, including the Guggenheim Foundation, the German Historical Institute, the Harvard Business School, the Smithsonian Institution, and the University of London. She currently offers A White Historian Reads Black History, a series of talks for religious and community groups. An amateur herbalist over many decades, she is developing her historical research about the commerce and culture of American botanical medicine into a new website, Herbstory: Medicinal Plants in American History( She lives with her husband in Takoma Park, Maryland.



Recent Publications
“What’s in Your Microwave Oven,” Opinion page, New York Times, April 15, 2017

“Snake Oil Revisited: Household Medicine and the Condescension of Posterity,” Process: A Blog for American History, March 21, 2017

Media Coverage
My book Waste and Want was featured in an article about recycling in Teen Vogue. I gave a talk and interview at Amerika Haus in Vienna, Austria, on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of Martin Luther King’s assassination. They made a little video. C
Country Focus
United States
Expertise by Geography
United States
Expertise by Chronology
5, 8
Expertise by Topic
Capitalism, Environment, Family, Food History, Material Culture, Medicine, Women