Danielle Phillips-Cunningham, Ph.D.

Associate Professor

Program Lead of

Multicultural Women's and Gender Studies

Danielle Phillips-Cunningham, Ph.D.


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Dr. Danielle Phillips-Cunningham is program director and associate professor of Multicultural Women’s and Gender Studies (MWGS) at Texas Woman’s University (TWU). She is the recipient of the National Women’s Studies Association’s Sara A. Whaley Book Prize for her book titled Putting Their Hands on Race: Irish Immigrant and Southern Black Domestic Workers (Rutgers University Press, 2020). Her work about Irish immigrant and African American domestic workers has appeared in Signs: The Journal of Women and Culture in Society and the Women’s History Review.
Phillips-Cunningham is the co-principal investigator of “Quakertown Stories,” a curriculum project funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities. Quakertown Stories is an interdisciplinary initiative to integrate the history of Quakertown, a local Black community destroyed in 1921, into TWU’s curriculum.
At TWU, Phillips-Cunningham led the process of establishing a B.A. program in Multicultural Women’s and Gender Studies. The program will launch in Fall 2022. She teaches courses about race, feminist/womanist theories, and women’s labors and migrations. She also developed the first cross-listed course between TWU and Spelman College with Dr. Sheri Davis-Faulkner (Associate Director of the Center for Innovation of Worker Organization at Rutgers University). The title of their course is “Covid-19 & Black Workers: Race, Gender, and Labor.”
As a 2020-2021 fellow of the OpEd Project’s Public Voices of the South, Phillips-Cunningham wrote about the connections between Black women’s labor organizing history and the recent elections in the United States. Her recent article “The Long History of Black Women’s Organizing Might Decide Senate Control” appeared in The Washington Post https://www.washingtonpost.com/outlook/2020/12/10/long-history-black-women-organizing-georgia-might-decide-senate-control/). Her project about the twentieth century history of domestic worker organizing in Atlanta, Georgia is supported by awards from the Atlanta University Center’s Robert Woodruff Library and Georgia State University’s Southern Labor Archives.
Phillips-Cunningham is working on a book-length study about the early twentieth century labor organizing history of educator Nannie Helen Burroughs’ National Trade School for Women and Girls in Washington D.C. The project is supported by an American Philosophical Society Franklin Research Grant, the African American Intellectual History Association’s C.L.R. James Research Fellowship, and a TWU Creative Arts and Humanities Grant.
Phillips-Cunningham’s article about Burroughs and her contributions to the U.S. labor movement appeared in The Washington Post. Phillips-Cunningham also co-authored articles about Burroughs with her student Veronica Popp. Their article appeared in Peitho: Journal of the Coalition of Feminist Scholars in the History of Rhetoric and Compositionand Gender Forum. They have a forthcoming article in the Journal of Women, Gender, and Families of Color.
Phillips-Cunningham has served on several committees in the fields of Women’s and Gender Studies and African American Studies. She was recently elected to the Executive Board of the Labor and Working-Class History Association (LAWCHA).
Link to website: https://www.daniellephillips-cunningham.com/


Ph.D., Women's and Gender Studies, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ
B.A., Comparative Women's Studies, Spelman College, Atlanta, GA

Research Interests

Domestic Work; African American Women's History; Irish Immigrant Women's History; Women's Labors; Women's Migrations; Labor Activism; Diversity Issues In Higher Education

Latest Articles

Slaving Irish Ladies and Black Towers of Strength in the Labor World: Race and Women's Resistance in Domestic Service
Women's History Review (2020)
Danielle Phillips-Cunningham

Book Review of Colored No More: Reinventing Black Womanhood in Washington DC by Treva B. Lindsey (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 2017)
Journal of American Ethnic History (2018)
Danielle Phillips-Cunningham

Possibilities for Hidden Gems in a Rare Feminist Archive: Topic Model Browsing on Women's Migration
Signs: Journal of Women in Culture and Society (2017)
Danielle Taylor Phillips


Putting Their Hands on Race: Irish Immigrant and Southern Black Domestic Workers
The Rutgers University Press (2020)
Danielle Phillips-Cunningham


Cleaning Race: Irish Immigrant and Southern Black Domestic Workers in New York, 1865-1930
in Untangling the Threads of Sisterhood: New Perspectives on Women's History | Rutgers University Press (2017)
Danielle Phillips-Cunningham

Externally Funded Projects

Reed Fink Award in Southern Labor History Archives Travel Award, Georgia State University
Georgia State University, Southern Labor History Archives | $600.00 | 2020
Role: Principal Investigator

Atlanta University Center's Robert W. Woodruff Research Travel Award
Robert W. Woodruff Library | $1,500.00 | 2020
Role: Principal Investigator

American Philosophical Society Franklin Research Grant
American Philosophical Society | $6,000.00 | 2020
Role: Principal Investigator

Internally Funded Projects

Public Voices of the South Fellowship, Partnership of the OpEd Project, Advancing Black Labor Strategists Initiative, and Morehouse College
The Jane Nelson Institute for Women's Leadership, Texas Woman's University | $0.00 | 2020
Research Grant

Creative Arts and Humanities Grant
Office of Research and Sponsored Programs, Texas Woman's University | $4,978.00 | 2019
Research Grant

Comprehensive Research Funds
Office of the Dean of Arts and Sciences, Texas Woman's University | $2,000.00 | 2016
Research Grant

Quality Enhancement Program's Pioneering Pathways: Learning by Doing
$500.00 | 2015
Research Grant

Research Development Fund
Office of Dean of Arts and Sciences, Texas Woman's University | $1,500.00 | 2015
Research Grant

Creative Actitivies

Creative Arts and Humanities Grant Project (2019)
Public History Scholarship | Library of Congress

Curator, The Marcia Niemann Feminist Archival Collection (2019)
Public History Scholarship | The Woman's Collection, TWU Library

Professional Affiliations

  • African American Intellectual Historical Society
  • Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH)
  • International Federation for Research on Women's History
  • Motherhood Initiative for Research and Community Involvement
  • National Association of African American Studies
  • National Council of Black Political Scientists
  • National Women's Studies Association
  • Organization of American Historians
  • Phi Beta Kappa Society