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Sam Rosenfeld

Assistant Professor of Political Science, Colgate University

About Sam

Rosenfeld's research focuses on political parties and American political development. Major themes in his work include the interaction between social movements and formal politics, the relationship between party politics and constitutional government, institutional reform, and the history of American social policy.


In the News

"How Feminists Became Democrats," Sam Rosenfeld, Politico, February 3, 2018.
"Can Steve Bannon Realign American Politics?," Sam Rosenfeld, The New York Times, December 8, 2017.
"Two Cheers for Polarization," Sam Rosenfeld, Boston Review, October 25, 2017.
"There's No Going Back," Sam Rosenfeld, Democracy: A Journal of Ideas, May 2, 2016.


The Polarizers: Postwar Architects of Our Partisan Era (The University of Chicago Press, 2017).

Offers a history of the construction of an ideologically defined party system in America. Details why bipartisanship was seen as a problem in the postwar period and how polarization was then cast as the solution.

"Fed by Reform: Congressional Politics, Partisan Change, and the Food Stamp Program, 1961-1981" Journal of Policy History 22, no. 4 (2010): 474-504.

Traces the impact of the congressional committee system and congressional reform on the food stamp program in the 1960s and 1970s. 

"Making Sense of Our Hollow Parties," (with Daniel Schlozman), University of Akron, November 9, 2017.

Diagnoses the paradox of simultaneous weakness and strength, that modern parties present, as "hollowness." Offers an analysis of contemporary party pathologies in the context of parties' intellectual and institutional developments over two centuries.