Major Field: Modern European and Women’s and Gender History
Other Fields: Global History
Adviser: Lloyd S. Kramer
BA Vassar College, 2006 (History; English Literature)
MA University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 2010
MA Thesis: “Cultural Memory and National Representation: The Franco-Prussian War in French and German Literature, 1871–1900”
PhD University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 2015
I am a European and global historian with research and teaching interests in empire, nationalism, gender, and memory. My dissertation, entitled, “Memory, Politics, and National Identity: Defining the French Empire,” looks at these issues in the context of late nineteenth-century France. More specifically, it examines how writers, artists, intellectuals, and politicians attempted to shape the meaning of French empire during the unprecedented overseas imperial expansion that took place during the Third Republic. My work contends that in the shadow of the Second Empire’s collapse, “empire” came to operate as a contested category that individuals of different political and ideological persuasions attempted to define in opposition to one another, often by making reference to distinct sets of earlier imperial models. It also argues that there were important connections between these debates over the meaning of empire and the ongoing, highly politicized debates about French national identity. The project thus sheds light on the construction of imperial meanings and histories, the relationship between empire and national identity, and the role of different kinds of cultural productions in shaping and reflecting contemporary political opinion at the turn of the century in France.