Fayetteville’s Angie Maxwell named 2024 Carnegie Fellow

Angie Maxwell (Courtesy photo)

Angie Maxwell, a political scientist at the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville, has been named one of the 2024 Andrew Carnegie Fellows. She is among 28 fellows who will each receive a $200,000 stipend to support research on political polarization in American society.

Maxwell is a professor of Southern Studies and serves as director of the Diane D. Blair Center of Southern Politics and Society. She will use the fellowship to explore the polarization of white women in American politics. Her project aims to understand how differing conceptions of womanhood have contributed to this polarization, with a particular focus on the South.

“The polarization of white women is nuanced, yet measurable,” Maxwell said. “It has a complex history and dangerous implications for the future. If we are going to find a way to protect and preserve democracy, we have to get this part right.”

Maxwell’s research will analyze the historical and contemporary factors that have shaped differing views of womanhood and their impact on political polarization. Her work aims to clarify how these perceptions influence voting behavior and attitudes on key issues such as reproductive rights.

Maxwell is known for her focus on Southern politics and gender issues.

She is the author of The Indicted South: Public Criticism, Southern Inferiority, and the Politics of Whiteness, which won the V. O. Key Award for best book on Southern politics. She also co-authored The Long Southern Strategy: How Chasing White Voters in the South Changed American Politics, which was named a Times Higher Education Book of the Week.

“This is an impressive and much-needed field of study that (Maxwell) is uniquely positioned to lead,” said Kathryn Sloan, interim dean of the U of A’s Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences. “Angie is a nationally recognized top expert on the intersection of Southern politics and women, and her powerful research will make an incredible, tangible difference in creating new foundations and inroads for a stronger democracy.”

Maxwell is a Truman Scholar and holds a Ph.D. in American studies from the University of Texas. Her work has been featured on MSNBC, NPR, and CNN.

Support for Maxwell’s project is part of a broader effort to address political polarization. The Carnegie foundation will invest up to $6 million annually in the program over the next three years.