Adam Derek Zientek

Adam Zientek Portrait

Position Title
Assistant Professor

SSH 4206


  • Ph.D., History, Stanford University, 2012
  • M.A., History, Stanford University, 2006
  • B.A., History, University of California, Berkeley, 2004


Adam Zientek is a historian of modern Europe with a focus on France. He is interested in the social history of war, the history of military medicine and psychiatry, and the history of alcohol and drugs.

Research Focus

Professor Zientek’s research focuses on the experience of trench-fighting in the First World War. He investigates how soldiers mitigated the psychological pressures of fighting by analyzing soldiers’ daily practices and rituals. His current manuscript, Wine and Blood, considers the role that state-sponsored alcohol consumption had in shaping the French experience of the war. He is also interested in using recent research in the neurological and cognitive sciences to help historians make sense of human behavior in the past.


Zientek, A. (2014) “Affective neuroscience and the causes of the mutiny of the French 82nd Infantry Brigade,” Contemporary European History 23, 3, pp. 505-22.


Professor Zientek teaches History 4C (Modern Western Civilization), History 102E (The Experience of Combat in Modern Europe), History 141 (Modern France), and History 134A (The Age of Revolution)


  • Gargan Award for Best Graduate Student Paper, Western Society for French History, 2011
  • Short-term Visiting Scholar, Institute of Advanced Studies, University of Minnesota, 2010
  • Josephine de Kármán Dissertation Completion Fellowship, 2010
  • Georges Lurcy Charitable Trust Disseration Research Grant, 2009
  • Best Graduate Student Designed and Led Course, Stanford University, 2007
  • Collin Miller Memorial Prize in History, University of California Berkeley, 2003