Saint Louis University
Candidate for Executive Council (2024-26)
I am an Associate Professor in the Department of American Studies at Saint Louis University, where I teach classes on US cultural, religious, and transnational histories. In my research, I have been particularly interested in the intersections of US Catholicism and empire, and I have become increasingly concerned with the study of girlhood and incarceration.
In 2020 I published The Imperial Church: Catholic Founding Fathers and United States Empire (Cornell UP), which examines cross-confessional commemorations of Catholic missionary history as part of the rhetoric of U.S. empire in the Gilded Age and Progressive Era. I am currently working on a book project entitled California Magdalens: Women, Religion, and the Carceral State, 1850-1940, a globally-situated history of the San Francisco Magdalen Asylum. The asylum was founded by Irish immigrant Sisters of Mercy as a place to reform “wayward” women; it also became a state-sponsored carceral institution for juvenile girls and was part of a loose network of such institutions throughout Ireland, the United States, Canada, and Australia.
I would be excited about the opportunity to serve on the Executive Committee of the ACHA, and would bring a variety of administrative experiences, including my current service as a member of the Arrangements Committee for the upcoming San Francisco meeting, as coordinator of my department’s graduate program, and as co-founder of SLU’s new Center for Research on Global Catholicism.