Peter Cajka
Postdoctoral Research Associate
401 Geddes Hall

Peter Cajka studies 20th-century U.S. intellectual and cultural history with an emphasis on Catholicism. His dissertation is titled “The Rights of Conscience: The Rise of Tradition in America’s Age of Fracture, 1940–1990.” He has published articles in Ohio History and American Catholic Studies, and is a regular contributor to the blog Religion in American History.

Cajka earned his Ph.D. in history from Boston College in 2017. He holds his bachelor of arts in history from the University of Dayton and a master’s degree in history from Marquette University.

Valentina Ciciliot
Marie Curie Postdoctoral Fellow
404 Geddes Hall

Valentina Ciciliot joins the Cushwa Center from the Ca’ Foscari University of Venice, Italy, as the recipient of a 2015 Marie Curie Fellowship from the European Commission. She specializes in the history of contemporary Christianity and holds her Ph.D. from the University of Reading, United Kingdom.

Her current project examines the origins of the Catholic charismatic movement in North America and Europe as well as the movement’s global reach and contexts. Ciciliot is pursuing this research over the course of a two-year visit to Notre Dame (2016–2018), beginning with materials at the Notre Dame Archives.

Luca Codignola
Senior Fellow
Rome Global Gateway (Rome, Italy)

Luca Codignola joined the Cushwa Center in 2016. A historian of the early modern era, Codignola is former professor of Early North American History at Università di Genova (Italy), where he served on the faculty for 25 years. His career also includes four years as head of the Institute of History of Mediterranean Europe of Italy's National Research Council and recent affiliations with University of Toronto, Université Laval, and Saint Mary's University (Halifax).

The author of 10 books and editor of more than a dozen volumes, Codignola’s recent publications include Little Do We Know: History and Historians of the North Atlantic, 1492-2010 (2011); and the six-volume Calendar of Documents Relating to North America (Canada and the United States) in the Archives of the Sacred Congregation "de Propaganda Fide" in Rome 1622-1846 (2012).

Benjamin J. Wetzel
Postdoctoral Research Associate
405 Geddes Hall

Benjamin J. Wetzel researches the intersection of American religion, politics, and intellectual life in the period from 1860 to 1920. He has published articles in The Journal of Church and State and The Journal of the Gilded Age and Progressive Era.

Wetzel earned his bachelor of arts in history from Grove City College, his master’s degree in history from Baylor University, and his Ph.D. in history from the University of Notre Dame. He is currently at work on two book-length projects. More information about Wetzel's scholarship can be found at benjaminjwetzel.wordpress.com.