Dr. Morgan Robinson

Associate Fellow

Academic Career

  • Mississippi State University, Starkville, MS,
    Assistant Professor, Fall 2018 – Present
  • Institute of Asian and African Studies, Humboldt University, Berlin
    Humboldt Research Fellowship for Postdoctoral Researchers
    January 2021-July 2022
  • Princeton University, Princeton, NJ
    PhD in History, May 2018
    Dissertation: “An Uncommon Standard: A Social and Intellectual History of Swahili, 1864-1925”
  • Princeton University
    MA in History, September 2013
  • Yale University, New Haven, CT,
    BA in History, May 2008

Research Interests

African history, East Africa, Tanzania, Zanzibar, language, standardization, history of science, bureaucracy, knowledge production


  • A Language for the World: The Standardization of Swahili (Ohio University Press “New African Histories” Series, November 2022)
  • “When a Wonder is Not a Wonder: Swahili, Translation, and the Communication of Knowledge,” Isis 114, no.2 (June 2023: 233-248).
  • “The Idea of the Upelekwa: Constructing a Transcontinental Community in Eastern Africa, 1888-1896,” Journal of the History of Ideas 81, no.1 (January 2020): 85-106.
  • “Binding Words: Student Biographical Narratives and Religious Conversion,” in Klaas van Walraven (ed.), The Individual in African History: The Importance of Biography in African Historical Studies (Brill: Leiden and Boston, 2020).
  • “La Belle Époque from Eastern Africa: An Individual Experience of the ‘Globalizing’ World, 1898-1918,”Journal of Eastern African Studies 13, no.4 (November 2019): 584-600.