The first recipient of the Frederick Ewen Academic Freedom Fellowship, Ellen Schrecker has been writing about higher education and political repression for nearly 30 years. Her current project, a study of contemporary academic freedom, draws on the resources of the Bobst and Tamiment Libraries to document the ways in which the structural changes of the past few decades have undermined the legitimacy and economic security of the academic profession, thus making it increasingly difficult for college and university teachers to express themselves freely both on and off the campus.

The author of Many Are the Crimes: McCarthyism in America (Little Brown, 1998; Princeton University Press, 1999), Schrecker is widely recognized as one of the leading experts on that grim period in our nation's history. A child of the 1950s whose sixth-grade teacher was a victim of the red scare, she decided to write about McCarthyism after teaching a course about it more than twenty years ago and discovering that there was no book that would make the anticommunist furor comprehensible to her students.

Her first work on the subject, a study of the impact of the Red Scare on the academic community, No Ivory Tower: McCarthyism and the Universities, was published by the Oxford University Press in 1986. She has also written a classroom reader, The Age of McCarthyism: A Short History with Documents (Bedford Books, 1994), as well as many popular and scholarly articles about the McCarthy period. Her most recent book is an edited collection of essays, Cold War Triumphalism: Exposing the Misuse of History after the Fall of Communism (The New Press, 2004). She is currently collaborating with the CUNY political scientist, Corey Robin, on a general study of political repression in America.

Schrecker has also written about contemporary academic freedom, and from 1998 to 2001, she was the editor of Academe, the journal of the American Association of University Professors. In 1983, she edited, with Craig Kaplan, Regulating the Intellectuals: Perspectives on Academic Freedom in the 1980s (Praeger, 1983).

Currently a professor of American history at Yeshiva University, Schrecker has been awarded fellowships from the National Humanities Center and the Bunting Institute at Radcliffe College. She earned her doctorate from Harvard University, and she has taught at many institutions, including Harvard University, Princeton University, New York University, the New School for Social Research, and Columbia University. Among her publications are a monograph on Franco-American relations in the 1920s and a Chinese cookbook.