Research & Teaching Interests
My work focuses on the social and cultural history of the nineteenth-century United States. My research and teaching are particularly interested in the relationships between popular culture (including popular science, print, and entertainment) and race, gender, and the body. My current book project, Whiskerology: Hair and the Legible Body in Nineteenth-Century America, argues that during the nineteenth century, Americans shared an extraordinary faith in the diagnostic and classificatory power of hair, which they understood to be capable of conveying reliable information about a stranger's identity and character. As a teacher, I am especially focused on K–16 history pedagogy: how history is taught in K–12 and college classrooms, and the bridge between these two levels. I am a co-founder of the Teaching History Conference, a community of practice (with a biannual flagship conference, first held in 2015) that fosters collaborative K-16 conversations among history educators at all levels and across all sectors. I am also the current Executive Director of the Western Association of Women Historians.
PhD, History, University of California, Berkeley
MA, History, University of California, Berkeley
BA, History and Linguistics, University of California, Berkeley