My academic research focuses on eighteenth-century American history and is concerned with broad questions about the American Revolution and the transition to modernity in the period. We are often tempted to portray the transition to modern ways of organizing the world as elegant and completely embraced, yet in fact as all my research shows, it was halting, disjointed, and sometimes deeply painful for the people going through it. Modernity was not self-evidently superior to the people who found themselves grappling with immense change.
I have a wonderful job as an Associate Professor of History and Interdisciplinary Liberal Studies at James Madison University in Harrisonburg, Virginia. When not teaching or researching at a university named for the Father of the Constitution, I enjoy the area’s local craft breweries, diverse people, and wines and cheeses from around the world. I live in downtown Harrisonburg with my spouse and children.