- by Mount Saint Mary College
Michael McGuire, assistant professor of History at Mount Saint Mary College, will continue this semester’s Investigating Research on Campus (iROC) series with “Elective Citizens? The Radcliffe College Community’s Spectral Participation in World War I Activity, 1914-1926” on Thursday, February 25, at 12:45 p.m.
The talk will take place virtually via Zoom. It is free and open to the public, but you must register to attend. Register at
All totaled, more than 2,000 members of the Radcliffe College community assisted people impacted by World War I. However, according to McGuire, many students, faculty, administrators, and alumnae did not join in the war effort. In fact, the Radcliffe College community's 1914-1920 war record shows that these women and men generally did not consider solicited patriotic action to be a civic duty during wartime.
This upcoming iROC talk comes from McGuire’s article, “A War Generation? The Radcliffe College Community in the Great War Era, 1914-1926,” which was published in the Journal of the Gilded Age and Progressive Era. In this research, he sought to determine whether a women’s college that traditionally represented itself as civic-minded got swept up in what one scholar called America’s World War I “culture of coercive voluntarism.” McGuire’s work established that some faculty, students, and alumnae did indeed involve themselves in war-related concerns, but that many, including Radcliffe's president at the time, chose not to.
McGuire has studied history throughout his education, earning a bachelor’s degree at Vassar College and a Ph.D. at Boston University. He has taught at multiple institutions in the greater Boston area before coming to the Mount. His prior and current research focuses on the reasons why people enter humanitarian projects, and how the charitable assistance they provide intersects with cultural and diplomatic concerns.
The goal of the college’s iROC is to provide a forum for Mount faculty, staff, and students to showcase their research endeavors with the college and local communities. Presentations include research proposals, initial data collection, and completed research projects.
Mount Saint Mary College, ranked a Top-Tier University by U.S. News & World Report, offers bachelor’s and master’s degree programs for careers in healthcare, business, education, social services, communications, media, and the liberal arts.

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