I am a cultural historian who works on nineteenth- and twentieth-century American topics. I use literature, pop-cultural artifacts, and visual culture as sources for my work, and am primarily focused on private-sphere concerns and phenomena.
I received my doctorate in American Studies, with a graduate certificate in Studies of Women, Gender, and Sexuality, from Harvard University. I additionally hold an A.M. in History from Harvard, an M.A. in American Civilization from Brown University, and a B.A. in English Literature from Yale University.
Before my academic career I worked as an editor of photography books at Aperture Foundation in New York City.
Women in Literature
Multicultural American Literature
Early American Literature
My book project, Domestic Pleasures: Dreams of Hope and Fulfillment in American Home Life, traces the intellectual history of the idea of pleasure in private life. It focuses on representations of gendered pleasure as they circulated in literary, prescriptive, and popular texts and images during a pair of Gilded Ages a century apart. A second project addresses the development of taste as a transatlantic phenomenon, with a particular focus on taste-makers and their evolving qualifications.
I maintain active research interests in representations of gender, race, and class; the body; the family and domesticity; childhood; the intellectual histories of love and beauty; food; DIY culture; the relationship between text and image; the history of sexuality and gender; and gender politics.