Major Field: European History
Other Field: Military History
Adviser: Donald M. Reid
BA Goucher College, 2010 (History and French, magna cum laude)
MA University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 2013
MA Thesis: “Le silence de la guerre? French combatants’ memoirs of the Algerian War, 1956–1989″
PhD University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 2016
Dissertation: “Home from the djebel: the making of Algerian War veterans in France, 1956-1974.”
I am a scholar of modern French political, military, and social history.
My dissertation examined the return experiences of French veterans of the Algerian War of Independence (1954-1962), focusing on the movement they created and its activism. Service in the Algerian War affected over one million Frenchmen during a period of rapid modernization in France, but these citizens would go unrecognized as veterans by their government for over a decade after the war’s end. Analyzing veterans’ return experiences, memory, and activism helps us understand the political consequences of the Algerian War in postcolonial French society—how the generation of soldiers who fought a “war without a name” brought the war back home.
Drawing on state archives, veterans’ association archives, press coverage, and interviews and surveys of veterans, my dissertation argues that long before the French state deigned to recognize them or their war, veterans of Algeria were already politically active, as veterans and as citizens—both to promote their group interests, and to reshape French society based on lessons they drew from the war. Using perspectives of political history, military history, and memory, this dissertation presents a case study of how decolonization affected former colonizers, and the long-term consequences of sending citizens to fight in a controversial and unconventional war with changing war aims.
Post-doctorate work: In Fall 2016, I am teaching “The World Since 1945” and “Nineteenth Century Britain” at UNC-Chapel Hill, and I begin work as Project Coordinator for the Online Bibliography, Filmography and Webography “Gender, War and the Western World since 1600.”