CV last updated June 2014.

Professional Appointments

Associate Professor, Department of History, Virginia Commonwealth University, 2011-Present.

           Courtesy affiliation: Department of Gender, Sexuality, and Women's Studies.

Assistant Professor, Department of History, University of Texas, Austin, 2001-2011.

            Courtesy appointments: Center for Women’s & Gender Studies, Center for European Studies.


Johns Hopkins University.   M.A., History, 1997; Ph.D., History, 2001.
    Dissertation: “‘A Nation of Speechifiers’: Oratory, Print, and the Making of a Gendered American Public, 1780-1830,” under the direction of Professor Toby L. Ditz.  Committee: Michael Fried, Michael Moon, Ronald G. Walters, Larzer Ziff.

  • Finalist for the Lerner-Scott Dissertation Prize for the Best Dissertation in American Women’s and Gender History, Organization of American Historians, January 2002.

University of New Hampshire.   M.A., History, 1996. 
    Thesis: “Speaking Peace to Fight War:  Gender, Authority, and Rhetoric in William Ladd’s Antebellum American Peace Movement,” under the direction of Professor J. William Harris.  Committee: W. Jeffrey Bolster, Robert M. Mennel.

University of California, Santa Cruz.  B.A. with Honors in History and Cowell College Honors, 1988.

Book (refereed)

A Nation of Speechifiers: Making an American Public after the Revolution, University of Chicago Press, 2009: 290 pages. 

  • Winner of the James Broussard Best First Book Prize awarded by the Society of Historians of the Early American Republic (SHEAR), July 2010.
  • Finalist for the Best Book Prize awarded by the Berkshire Conference of Women Historians, Spring 2010.

Scholarly Articles and Book Chapters (refereed)

“Forgetting History: Antebellum American Peace Reformers and the Specter of the Revolution,” in the collection Remembering the Revolution: Memory, History, and Nation-Making in the United States from the Revolution to the Civil War, edited by W. Fitzhugh Brundage, Frances Clarke, Clare Corbould, and Michael A. McDonnell. Amherst: University of Massachusetts Press, 2013.

“A Vapour which Appears but for a Moment: Elocution for Girls during the Early American Republic,” in the collection Rhetoric, History, and Women's Oratorical Education: American Women Learn to Speak, edited by David Gold and Catherine Hobbs.  New York: Routledge, 2013.   

“Beware the Abandoned Woman: Male Travelers and Native Women in the Eighteenth-Century Atlantic World of Print,” in the collection Seduction and Sentiment in the Atlantic World, edited by Toni Bowers and Tita Chico.  New York: Palgrave, 2012.

 “Blood and Lust: Masculinity and Sexuality in Illustrated Print Portrayals of Early Pirates of the Caribbean” in the collection, New Men: Manliness in Early America, edited by Thomas A. Foster.  New York: New York University Press, January 2011.  This is a substantially revised version of my “Shivering Timbers” essay (see below).

“Fight Like a Man:  Gender and Rhetoric in the Early Nineteenth-Century American Peace Movement,” American Nineteenth-Century History 10 (September 2009): 247-71.

“The Indian Censures the White Man: ‘Indian Eloquence’ and American Reading Audiences in the Early Republic,” William and Mary Quarterly 3rd ser., 65 (July 2008): 535-64.

“The Female Cicero:  Young Women’s Oratory and Gendered Public Participation in the Early American Republic,” Gender and History 19 (August 2007): 260-83.

Scholarly Articles (not refereed)

“Shivering Timbers: Sexing Up the Pirates in Early Modern Print Culture,” Common-Place, October 2009:

Recent Review Essays and Book Reviews (not refereed)

Review essay of The Story of America: Essays on Origins by Jill Lepore, in Early American Literature, 49, 3, forthcoming Fall/Winter 2014.

Review of The Cosmopolitan Lyceum: Lecture Culture and the Globe in Nineteenth-Century America edited by Tom F. Wright, in Journal of American Studies, forthcoming Fall 2014.

Review of Citizenship and the Origins of Women's History in the United States by Teresa Anne Murphy, in The Journal of American History, June 2014.

"The Revolution Takes a Turn: AMC's Drama about Washington's Spies Aims for Moral Complexity," review of the TV show Turn, in AHA Perspectives on History, April 2014:

Review of The Politics of Fashion in Eighteenth-Century America by Kate Haulman, in American Historical Review 118 (June 2013): 841-42.

Review of Imagining Deliberative Democracy in the Early American Republic by Sandra Gustafson, in the Journal of American History 99, 3 (December 2012): 902-03.

Review of The Exchange Artist: A Tale of High-Flying Speculation and America’s First Banking Collapse by Jane Kamensky, in the William and Mary Quarterly 3rd ser., 66 (January 2009): 202-5.

Rhetoric and Republic: Politics, Civic Discourse, and Education in Early America by Mark Longaker, in the New England Quarterly 81 (December 2008): 726-28.

“Reinterpreting Women, Politics, and Culture,” review essay of Revolutionary Backlash: Women and Politics in the Early American Republic by Rosemarie Zagarri, on H-SHEAR, October 2008:

“‘Marriage is No Frolic’; or, The Rise and Fall of Nonmarital Sex in Early Philadelphia,” review essay of Sex Among the Rabble: An Intimate History of Gender and Power in the Age of Revolution, Philadelphia, 1730-1830 by Clare A. Lyons, in Reviews in American History 35 (2007): 25-31.

Grants, Fellowships, and Honors

Prizes and Honors:

Distinguished Lecturer, appointed by the Organization of American Historians (OAH), 2014-2017.

Fellow of the Massachusetts Historical Society, elected May 2012.

James Broussard Best First Book Prize, Society of Historians of the Early American Republic (SHEAR), 2010.

Finalist, Best Book Prize, Berkshire Conference of Women Historians, Spring 2010.

Supportive of my second book project, Learning to See:

NEH Long-Term Fellowship, American Antiquarian Society, Worcester, MA, 2011-2012.

Sidney Lapidus Fellowship, Princeton University Library, Princeton, NH, June 2011.

Helen L. Bing Fellowship, Huntington Library, San Marino, CA (one month), June-July 2010.

Special Research Grant, University of Texas, Summer 2010, for research in London. 

Undergraduate Research Apprenticeship Program, University of Texas, Fall 2009.  This competitive grant permitted me to hire an undergraduate to work closely with me on my research and writing for one semester, undertaken among the rare books at UT’s Harry Ransom Center.

W. Jackson Bate/ Douglas W. Bryant, American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies (ASECS) Fellowship, Houghton Library, Harvard University (one month), July 2009. 

NEH Long-Term Fellowship, Massachusetts Historical Society (one semester), Spring 2009. 

Jay and Deborah Last Fellowship, American Antiquarian Society (one month), January 2009. 

Ruth and Lincoln Ekstrom Research Fellowship, John Carter Brown Library, Brown University (four months), Fall 2008. 

Supportive of my first book (and dissertation), A Nation of Speechifiers:

University Co-operative Society Subvention Grant, University of Texas, Fall 2009.

Special Research Grant, University of Texas, Fall 2004, Spring 2006. 

Research Grant, University of Texas, Summer 2004. 

J. Franklin Jameson Fellowship, American Historical Association, Summer 2004. 

Lloyd Lewis Postdoctoral Fellowship, Newberry Library, Chicago, 2003-2004. 

Postdoctoral Fellowship, Rutgers Center for Historical Analysis, 2003-2004 (declined). 

Research Fellowship, Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History, New York, Summer 2003. 

Research Fellowship, New-York Historical Society, July 2003. 

Faculty Development Program, Summer Research Assignment, University of Texas, Summer 2003. 

Finalist, Lerner-Scott Dissertation Prize for the Best Dissertation in American Women’s and Gender History, Organization of American Historians, January 2002.

Dissertation Fellow, McNeil Center for Early American Studies, University of Pennsylvania, 1998-1999. 

Andrew W. Mellon Research Fellowship, Library Company of Philadelphia, August 1998. 

Leonard and Helen R. Stulman Graduate Fellowship, Johns Hopkins University, 1997-1998.

Andrew W. Mellon Research Fellowship, Massachusetts Historical Society, August 1997. 

Kate B. & Hall J. Peterson Research Fellowship, American Antiquarian Society, July 1997. 

Recent Invited Talks and Conference Presentations

"The Strange Genius of Mr. O: America's First Celebrity Orator, Scandal, and His Transatlantic Career," paper delivered at "Celebrity Encounters: Transatlantic Fame in Nineteenth-Century Britain and America," at the University of Portsmouth, England, July 2014.

"Her Dangerous Voice: Female Orators, Gender Trouble, and Public Outrage in the American 1820s," invited talk for Women's History Month, Department of Women's and Gender Studies (co-sponsored by the James Monroe Museum), University of Mary Washington, March 2014.

"Speechless: America's First Celebrity Orator and the Origins of 19th-century Platform Culture," annual meeting of the American Studies Association, Washington, D.C., November 2013.

"Looking for Love in All the Wrong Places: 18th-century Atlantic Travelogues and Their Readers," biennial conference of the Society of Early Americanists, Savannah, February-March 2013.

"How the 19th-century Golden Age of American Eloquence Erased its First Nationwide Oratorical Celebrity," invited talk to the Northwestern University Department of Communication, Evanston, IL, January 2013.

Roundtable Participant, "State of the Field: Roundtable on Visual and Material Culture," annual meeting of SHEAR, Baltimore, July 2012.

"Looking, Loving, and Losing: Sex and Gender on the Move in 18th-century Travelogues," Regional Academic Seminar, American Antiquarian Society/Brown University History Department, Providence, RI, April 2012.

"Fighting War with Peace: The War of 1812 and the 19th-century Peace Movement," invited talk for the Portsmouth Athenaeum Lecture Series, Portsmouth, NH, March 2012.

"Peace Reformers and the Specter of the Revolution," annual meeting of the OAH, Milwaukee, WI, April 2012.

"'Grandeurs wch I had heard of': Books and the Imagined World of Travel in the Eighteenth Century," invited talk for the American Antiquarian Society Public Programs Series, November 2011.

“A Nation of Speechifiers: Making an American Public after the Revolution,” Colloquium in American Literature and Culture, New York University, October 26, 2010.

Teaching, Advising, and Mentoring

Teaching Honors at the University of Texas:

Nominee, Lucia, Jack & Melissa Gilbert Teaching Excellence Award in Women’s & Gender Studies, 2010.

Nominee, Harry Ransom Award for Teaching Excellence, College of Liberal Arts, October 2009.

Named one of UT’s “most inspirational female professors,” Orange Jackets Association’s “Week of Women Celebration,” Spring 2008.

Recipient, Dads’ Association Centennial Teaching Fellowship (a university-wide award), 2006.

Nominee, Friar Centennial Teaching Fellowship, 2005 and 2002.

Nominee, Lucia, Jack & Melissa Gilbert Teaching Excellence Award in Women’s & Gender Studies, 2004.

Institutional and Professional Service

Service to External Professional Organizations and Scholarly Journals:

Member, Editorial Board, Journal of the Early Republic, 2014-present.

Member, Program Committee, Annual Meeting of SHEAR, Philadelphia, 2014.

Elected member of the Nominating Committee for SHEAR, 2013-2015.

Member, NEH Long-Term Fellowship selection committee, American Antiquarian Society, Spring 2013.

Evaluator of applicants for the Mellon post-doctoral fellowships, Omohundro Institute of Early American History and Culture, Fall 2012.

Peer Review Panelist for Fellowship Applications, National Endowment for the Humanities, Washington, DC, August 2012.

Member, Hench Post-Dissertation Fellowship Selection Committee, American Antiquarian Society, 2007-2008.

Reviewer of article manuscripts for William and Mary Quarterly, Journal of American History, Journal of Southern History, Journal of the Early Republic, Journal of Women’s History, Proceedings of the American Antiquarian Society, The University of Texas Undergraduate Research Journal, Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers, and Libraries & Culture, 1998-present.

Reviewer of book manuscripts for the University of Chicago Press, Blackwell Publishing, Copley Publishing, 2002-Present.

Faculty Lecturer, Workshop on the American 1920s for Texas high school history teachers (a Teaching American History project), Region XIII/University of Texas, January and July 2007.

Member, Program Committee, Annual Meeting of SHEAR, Montreal, Quebec, July 2006.

Faculty Leader, Connecting With American History (a Teaching American History project for middle- and high school history teachers), Newberry Library/Chicago Public School System, Chicago, summer 2005 and summer 2006.

Faculty Lecturer, SHIPS Program on Teaching American History (for Austin-area middle- and high school teachers), June 2005.