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Richard Ravalli

Associate Professor


  • Ph.D., University of California, Merced

  • M.A., California State University, Stanislaus

  • B.A., California State University, Stanislaus

Professor Ravalli has been teaching History at Jessup since 2011. His areas of expertise are the American frontier, California history, and American cinema. He enjoys historical field trips and engaging with students on undergraduate research projects.


  • Sea Otters: A History. University of Nebraska Press (2018)

Book Reviews

  • Dane A. Morrison, True Yankees: The South Seas & The Discovery of American Identity. Itinerario: International Journal on the History of European Expansion and Global Interaction 42:2 (August 2018): 321-322.
  • Jared Miracle, Now with Kung Fu Grip!: How Bodybuilders, Soldiers and a Hairdresser Reinvented Martial Arts for America (Jefferson, North Carolina: McFarland & Company, Inc., 2016). Sport in American History, November 18, 2017,
  • John Wills, The Forgotten Governor: Fernando de Rivera and the Opening of Alta California (Minneapolis, MN: Langdon Street Press, 2015). Journal of the West 55:2 (Spring 2016): 99-100
  • Douglas Brode and Leah Deyneka, Eds., Myth, Media, and Culture in Star Wars: An Anthology and Sex, Politics, and Religion in Star Wars: An Anthology (Lanham, MD: The Scarecrow Press, 2012). Historical Journal of Film, Radio and Television 34:2 (2014): 318-320
  • R.G. Robertson, Competitive Struggle: America’s Western Fur Trading Posts, 1764-1865 (Caldwell, ID: Caxton Press, 2012). Journal of the West 52:2 (Spring 2013): 92

Book Chapter

  • Sea Otter Aesthetics in Popular Culture. In Daniel Moorehead, ed., Animals in Human Society: Amazing Creatures Who Share Our Planet (Lanham, MD: University Press of America, 2016)


  • With Michael McGrann. Sea Otter Hunting and Conservation in Southern California Since the Gold Rush. Southern California Quarterly 101:4 (Fall 2019): 265-284
  • George Lucas Out of Love: Divorce, Darkness, and Reception in the Origin of PG-13. The Historian 78:4 (Winter 2016): 690-709
  • Grounds of Our Claim: William Sturgis and Commercial Diplomacy on the Northwest Coast. Columbia: The Magazine of Northwest History 28:1 (Spring 2014): 14-20
  • With Kirsten Livingston and Hannah Zimmerman, A Revised List of Vessels Engaged in the California Sea Otter Trade, 1786-1847. International Journal of Maritime History XXIV:2 (December 2012): 225-238

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