Ben Goossen is a scholar of global history. His interests include the environment, transnationalism, religion, science, and life in the Anthropocene. Goossen's current project, "The Year of the Earth (1957-1958): Cold War Science and the Making of Planetary Consciousness," is an interpretive history of the International Geophysical Year. Drawing on research conducted on six continents, it illuminates the intersections of science and geopolitics—including Antarctic law, the rise of big data, continental drift theory, and the discovery of global warming—at the dawn of the space age. Goossen is the author of Chosen Nation: Mennonites and Germany in a Global Era (Princeton University Press), which examines the relationship between Mennonites and German nationalism over the past two centuries. Chosen Nation follows communities from Siberia to Paraguay, offering a multifaceted perspective on the interactions of faith, culture, place, and race during nationalism’s emergence in Europe and the world.
Goossen has held fellowships from the Fulbright Commission, the Smithsonian Institution, the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD), and the Beinecke Scholarship Program. He edits the German Mennonite Sources Database and is a co-founder of Anabaptist Historians. He has received awards for excellence in teaching and writing from the Kansas Historical Foundation, the Associated Church Press, the Canadian Church Press, Swarthmore College, and Harvard University.
Chosen Nation: Mennonites and Germany in a Global Era (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2017). Paperback 2019.
Introduction Bibliography Reviews
Articles and Chapters
“Terms of Racial Endearment: Nazi Categorization of Mennonites in Ideology and Practice, 1929-1945,” German Studies Review 44, no. 1 (2021): forthcoming.
"A Benchmark for the Environment: Big Science and ‘Artificial’ Geophysics in the Global 1950s," Journal of Global History 15, no. 1 (2020): forthcoming.
"'By the Hand of a Woman': Gender, Nationalism, and the Origins of Mennonite History Writing," Mennonite Quarterly Review 92, no. 3 (2018): 353-376.
"'Eine kleine Weltmacht’: Wie die NS-Regierung die Mennoniten sah," Mennonitische Geschichtsblätter 75 (2018): 63-85.
“'A Small World Power’: How the Nazi Regime Viewed Mennonites,” Mennonite Quarterly Review 92, no. 2 (2018): 173-206.
"Taube und Hakenkreuz: Verhandlungen zwischen der NS-Regierung und dem MCC in Bezug auf die lateinamerikanischen Mennoniten," Jahrbuch für Geschichte und Kultur der Mennoniten in Paraguay 18 (2017): 133-160.
“Das Völklein und das Volk: Mennoniten und Nationalismus in Deutschland vor 1933,” in Mennoniten in der NS-Zeit: Stimmen, Lebenssituationen, Erfahrungen, ed. Marion Kobelt-Groch and Astrid von Schlachta (Bolanden-Weierhof: Mennonitischer Geschichtsverein, 2017), 76-89.
"Mennonites in Latin America: A Review of the Literature," Conrad Grebel Review 34, no. 3 (2016): 236-265.
“Religious Nationalism in an Age of Globalization: The Case of Paraguay’s ‘Mennonite State,’” Almanack 13, no. 4 (2016): 74-90.
“From Aryanism to Anabaptism: Nazi Race Science and the Language of Mennonite Ethnicity,” Mennonite Quarterly Review 90, no. 2 (2016): 135-163.
“Measuring Mennonitism: Racial Categorization in Nazi Germany and Beyond,” Journal of Mennonite Studies 34 (2016): 225-246.
“Mennoniten als Volksdeutsche: Die Rolle des Mennonitentums in der nationalsozialistischen Propaganda,” trans. Helmut Foth, Mennonitische Geschichtsblätter 71 (2014): 54-70.
“‘Like a Brilliant Thread’: Gender and Vigilante Democracy in the Kansas Coalfield, 1921-1922,” Kansas History: A Journal of the Central Plains 34, no. 3 (2011): 206-223.
David L. Weaver-Zercher, Martyrs Mirror: A Social History (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2016).
Mark Jantzen, Mary S. Sprunger, and John D. Thiesen, European Mennonites and the Challenge of Modernity Over Five Centuries (North Newton, KS: Bethel College, 2016).
Jacob A. Neufeld, Path of Thorns: Soviet Mennonite Life under Communist and Nazi Rule (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2014).