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Present Postdoctoral Fellows

Emilie Connolly
James Godley
RL Goldberg
Hiroko Kumaki
Elizabeth Lhost
Jorge Ramirez-Lopez
Jeemin Rhim
Miriam Rich
Nicholas Rinehart
Whitney Barlow Robles
Amy Schiller
Danielle Simon
Natalie Teale
Sa Whitley
Yi Wu

Emilie ConnollyConnolly

PhD New York University

Dissertation:  "Indian Trust Funds and the Routes of American Capitalism, 1795-1865"

I am a historian of the 19th-century United States, with a focus on political economy, colonialism, and the Indigenous peoples of North America. I'm currently at work on a book manuscript, provisionally titled Empire’s Succession: Trusteeship and Native Dispossession in the United States, which examines how the federal government became both dispossessor of and trustee to the continent's first peoples. The project argues that federal trusteeship, often cast as a benevolent practice, in fact advanced an imperial strategy I call "fiduciary colonialism": a form of territorial acquisition and population management carried out through the expansion of administrative control over Indigenous wealth. Research for this project has drawn support from the American Council for Learned Societies, the Council on Library and Information Resources, the McNeil Center for Early American Studies, and the John E. Rovensky Fellowship for Business and Economic History. 

I'm also interested in the shifting relationships between taxation, citizenship, and Indigenous sovereignty in the 19th-century United States. My second book project will examine the implications of Indigenous polities’ longstanding immunity to colonial taxation, as enshrined by their exclusion from political representation in the United States Constitution as “Indians not taxed.”

In the fall of 2020, I joined the faculty at Brandeis University as an Assistant Professor of Early American History. I am delighted to return to the Dartmouth Society of Fellows for the 2021-2022 academic year.


James Godleygodley

PhD University at Buffalo, SUNY

Dissertation:  "Against Infinite Grief: Mourning and Speculative Invention in Postbellum American Literature"

James Godley’s work explores mourning as a process of retroactive invention in literary and philosophical works, particularly in relation to questions of community, solace, inheritance, and infinity. His current book manuscript, "Structures of Mass Mourning: The Potentiality of Loss in Post-Civil War American Literature" examines how the Civil War's massive death toll, disruptions to funerary rituals, and postwar racial violence combined with the advent of secular modernity to reconfigure the structural consequences of death and grief in the latter half of the nineteenth century, as contemplated in the work of US literary authors. 

In addition to work on this project, Godley has co-edited (with Joel Goldbach) the volume Inheritance in Psychoanalysis (SUNY Press, 2018) and published "On Infinite Grief: Freud, Hegel, and Lacan on the Thought of Death" in Angelaki and an article on the potential space of mourning in the afterlife of Elizabeth Stuart Phelps in Nineteenth Century Women Writers and Theologies of the Afterlife, a collection forthcoming with Routledge. Work under review or in progress explores the paradoxes of enjoyment in authoritarian populism, the foreclosure of mortality in contemporary biopolitics, and the concept of the frontier layered into psychoanalytic theories of the lost object. 


RL Goldberggoldberg

PhD Princeton University

Dissertation:  "I Changed My Sex!: Pedagogy and Trans Narrative"

RL Goldberg studies trans gender theory and phenomenology; their teaching and work focus on mid-century United States literature and culture, queer theory, Black feminist studies, and critical carceral studies. Their first book project is titled I Changed My Sex! Pedagogy and Trans Narrative and explores the language trans writers use in giving an account of trans identity as espistemologies of knowing, feeling, and certainty. RL's work has appeared in, or is forthcoming from, TSQ, Philip Roth Studies, ASAP/J, the Los Angeles Review of Books, McSweeney's, the Paris Review Daily, and elsewhere. 


Hiroko Kumakikumaki

PhD University of Chicago

Dissertation:  "Reasonably Exposed: Politics and Ethics of Living Fukushima"

Hiroko Kumaki is a sociocultural anthropologist whose research and teaching lies at the intersections of health, environment, and technoscience. Her scholarship examines the affective, material, and conceptual world making around environmental change, particularly as it relates to the experience of health and well-being. Her first book project, “Reasonably Exposed,” asks what it means to live well in a world that embraces certain levels of environmental exposure as “reasonable,” to be accepted by the general public for the broader good that toxigenic practices enable. Focusing on the ongoing aftermath of the nuclear accident in Fukushima, Japan, the project studies how knowledge and practices on environment and health interact and operate across multiple bodies, scales, and registers, to shape divergent political and ethical responses to the radioactive fallout. Hiroko is committed to ethnographic methods that engage and write “from” the lives of interlocutors, rather than “for” or “about” them. While at Dartmouth, she will begin her second project that investigates the relationship between technological innovation and environmental remediation in the U.S. and Japan.


Elizabeth Lhost

lhostPhD University of Chicago

Dissertation:  Between Community and Qānūn: Documenting Islamic Legal Practice in 19th-century British India"

Elizabeth Lhost is a historian of law and religion in modern South Asia. She completed her Ph.D. at the University of Chicago in the Departments of South Asian Languages and Civilizations and History and before joining the Society of Fellows, held a Mellon Postdoctoral Fellowship at the University of Wisconsin–Madison. Elizabeth is currently working on the manuscript for a book called "The Office of Islamic Law: Paperwork, Politics, and Possibilities in Modern South Asia (1800–1950)," which traces the history of Islamic law and legal practice in British India through everyday paperwork and writing practices. While at Dartmouth, she also plans to begin work on a second project investigating religious, ethical, and moral responses to new financial instruments around the turn of the twentieth century. In addition to the history of modern South Asia, Elizabeth's research and teaching interests also include global history, legal studies, science and technology studies, and religious studies, particularly as they relate to privacy, autonomy, and human rights. Her research has been supported by the Fulbright student program, the Social Science Research Council, the American Institute of Pakistan Studies (AIPS), the American Council of Learned Societies, and the Mellon Foundation and has appeared most recently in the Journal of Islamic Studies and Itinerario. Elizabeth currently serves on the AIPS Board of Trustees and recently became a fellow at the Internet Law & Policy Foundry. 


Jorge Ramirez-LopezRamirez

PhD University of California San Diego

Dissertation:  "Indigenous Worldmaking in a World of Crisis: Race and the Making of the Migrant Circuit between Southern Mexico and the US/Mexican Pacific Coast, 1968-1994"

I am an interdisciplinary historian whose work focuses on social movements, labor, migration, and race between the United States and Mexico. My first book project examines the history of Indigenous people from Oaxaca as they were incorporated as a new racialized labor force in the agroindustries along the US/Mexican Pacific Coast. The book maintains that we cannot understand the history of racial capitalism and labor in the American West, specifically in the post-1968 period, without understanding the Indigenous people from Oaxaca who made up a significant portion of the workforce and the transnational dimensions of agriculture that recruited them. Inspired by my training in the Black Radical Tradition and my commitments to the Oaxaqueñx community, my book centers what I term “Indigenous Worldmaking,” to describe the efforts by Indigenous people to recreate their communal lives across multiple landscapes and alongside the people they met along the way. At Dartmouth, I will be working on additional publications related to Indigenous expressive culture and social movements, while also teaching courses related to transnational migration and Latinx-Native American politics.


Jeemin Rhimrhim

PhD Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Dissertation:  "Experimental Investigations of Isotopologue Fractionation During Microbial Methanogenesis"

Jeemin is a geobiologist or, more specifically, an isotope biogeochemist. She combines microbial experiments and isotope analyses—investigations of the distribution and arrangement of atoms among and within molecules—to identify the origin and history of investigated molecules. Her PhD work focused on the isotopic signatures of methane (a potent greenhouse gas and a potential biosignature on Earth and other planets) produced by microorganisms. At Dartmouth, she will continue using the combination of experimental and analytical approaches to establish the interpretative framework for the isotopic signatures preserved in the lipid membranes of microorganisms. These signatures can remain stable in rocks up to over a billion years and can inform us about the conditions in which microorganisms produced their biomass. Jeemin is also an active advocate for diversity, equity and inclusion in geosciences and broader STEM fields.


Miriam RichRich

PhD Harvard University

Dissertation:  "Monstrous Births: Race, Gender, and Defective Reproduction in U.S. Medical Science, 1830-1930"

Miriam Rich is a historian of medicine and science in the modern United States, with a particular focus on the historical contexts of racial health disparities. Her first book project (under contract with Columbia University Press for their Series in Race, Inequality, and Health) explores how the biological category of "monstrosity" interfaced with developing concepts of race, reproduction, and embodied deviance in the nineteenth- and twentieth-century United States. She has previously written about the racialization of pain in nineteenth-century obstetrics, the social and political contexts of twentieth-century vaccination policy, and the resurgence of historical concepts of race in contemporary genetics and genomics. Her planned second book project focuses on the history of health and medicine within U.S. carceral systems. Before joining the Society of Fellows, she was a lecturer at Yale University, where she taught courses on the history of health and incarceration; the history of reproductive health and medicine; and the history of race, citizenship, and public health in the United States. She also serves as a historical research consultant for a project with Yale's SEICHE Center for Health and Justice, which examines historical and present-day contexts of pandemics in prisons.  


Nicholas Rinehartrinehart

PhD Harvard University

Dissertation:  "Narrative Events:  Slavery, Testimony, and Temporality in the Afro-Atlantic World"

Nicholas Rinehart is a scholar of Black literature in the Americas and the comparative history of Atlantic slavery, with additional interests in translation studies, philosophy of history, and queer theory. His first book project, The Event of Witness: Slave Testimony and Social Practice, charts an alternative cartography of enslaved testimonial expression. By centering hemispheric, multilingual archives of slave testimony that do not privilege autobiographical accounts of individual experience, The Event of Witness draws on feminist and queer theory to reveal how enslaved mystics, correspondents, poets, and storytellers, among others, produced testimony as a mode of mutual witness. The book thus frames slave testimony not as a site of memory but as a worldmaking practice—a way of imagining and enacting forms of social life beyond those imposed by regimes of enslavement and their afterlives. His research has appeared or is forthcoming in Callaloo, Journal of Social History, Journal of American Studies, MELUS, and Winterthur Portfolio, with additional essays in the Dictionary of Caribbean and Afro-Latin American Biography (Oxford UP) and Cambridge Companion to Richard Wright (2019). His public writing has appeared in Transition: Magazine of Africa and Diaspora, ReVista: Harvard Review of Latin America, Public Books, and Los Angeles Review of Books. He is also a co-editor, along with Wai Chee Dimock et al., of American Literature in the World: An Anthology from Anne Bradstreet to Octavia Butler (Columbia UP, 2017).


Whitney Barlow Roblesbarlow

PhD Harvard University

Dissertation: "Curious Species: How Animals Made Natural History, 1700-1820"

Whitney Barlow Robles is an interdisciplinary historian whose research spans the history of science, early American history, environmental studies, and material culture theory. Her first book project, Curious Species: How Enlightenment Animals Made Natural History (under contract with Yale University Press), positions animals like corals, rattlesnakes, fish, and raccoons as central protagonists of the history of eighteenth-century science. Portions of this work have received Harvard University’s Bowdoin Prize in the Natural Sciences, the Hakluyt Society Essay Prize, and Best Historical Reenactment by Bunk in their Best American History Reads of 2018. Her most recent publications have appeared in the William and Mary Quarterly, The New England Quarterly, and Commonplace: The Journal of Early American Life. Whitney is also an affiliate researcher with the Stanford-based Natural Things | Ad Fontes Naturae research group, a global natural history project in the digital humanities, where she is tracing the interlinked paths of food history, natural history, and empire using digital methods and historical artifacts. She recently curated a digital exhibition related to that research titled The Kitchen in the Cabinet: Histories of Food and Science (kitcheninthecabinet.com), which was produced in collaboration with Dartmouth students.


Amy Schillerschiller

PhD The Graduate Center, City University of New York

Dissertation:  "Caring Without Sharing: Philanthropy's Creation and Destruction of the Common World"

Amy Schiller's work explores the role of philanthropy in contemporary society, specifically the role philanthropy plays in reinforcing utilitarian and technocratic approaches to social progress, and the extent to which philanthropy can instead support human flourishing and build a common world. Her first book project examines these normative questions around philanthropy's purpose and the conditions necessary to return to its rightful place, using historical and contemporary figures from St. Augustine to Lebron James to illustrate different philanthropic mentalities. Her research has appeared in New Political Science, Society, and her public writing has been published in The Atlantic, The Washington Post, and The Nation, as well as a contributed essay to The Ferrante Letters: An Experiment in Collective Criticism (Columbia University Press, 2020). 


Danielle Simonsimon

PhD University of California, Berkeley

Dissertation:  "Ecco la radio:  Music, media and Politics in Fascist Italy"

Danielle Simon studies emerging media technologies and musical performance in Italy during and after the fascist period. Her current book project explores how radio generated and mediated political relationships during the first three decades of Italian radio broadcasting. She is planning a second project that responds to recent developments in studies of transnational fascism by examining radio broadcasts transmitted from Italy to the Italian diaspora living in the United States, Latin America, and the African colonies during the 1920s and 1930s. Her research has been previously supported by fellowships from the American Academy in Rome and the Mabelle McLeod Lewis Foundation. Her writing has appeared in Opera Quarterly and Representations and is forthcoming in the Cambridge Companion to Music and Fascism and the edited volume Sonic Circulations, 1900-1950. In 2017, she produced and directed the modern world premiere of Il cuore di Wanda, the first Italian opera composed for radio, in collaboration with artist E.V. Day.  


Natalie TealeTeale

PhD Rutgers University

Dissertation:  "Investigating the relationship between atmospheric moisture transport and precipitation in the eastern United States"

Natalie Teale is a physical geographer with specialization in hydroclimatology and applied climatology. She utilizes methods and concepts from climatology, hydrology, and geography to examine the multidirectional and cyclical interactions between the climate system and the hydrologic cycle. Her scholarship is centered on precipitation patterns, including variability in regional precipitation, impacts of heavy precipitation, and linkages with atmospheric moisture. In her PhD, she used machine learning to identify major pathways of water vapor transport through the eastern United States and investigated how these patterns and their associated precipitation changed through the 20th and early 21st centuries, thereby contextualizing observed variability in regional precipitation within the larger framework of climate change. At Dartmouth, she will use a regional climate modeling approach to understand how variability in magnitude and phase of cold-season precipitation affects local streamflows and flood regimes, with particular focus on the impacts of rain-on-snow events.


Sa Whitleywhitley

PhD University of California, Los Angeles

Dissertation:  "The Collective Come-Up: Black Queer Placemaking in Subprime Baltimore"

Sa Whitley is a black feminist ethnographer of capitalist urbanization and housing justice movements. Their current book project, “The Collective Come-Up,” examines the community economic development models and urban planning strategies of black queer and transgender women in the afterlife of the subprime foreclosure crisis. The interdisciplinary manuscript is situated at the intersection of Gender Studies, Cultural Anthropology, and Black Geography, offering a rigorous political reflection on racial capitalism and the ways that black activists figure the post-crisis financial and real estate markets as sites of both subjection and possibility. Tracing local convergences between feminist urban design and black resistance to gentrification, “The Collective Come-Up” also contributes to scholarly conversations about architectural preservation, queer economies, and urban revitalization. Whitley’s research has been supported by the UC Consortium for Black Studies, the Center for the Study of Women, and the Pembroke Center for Teaching and Research on Women. They have taught courses at Brown University and the Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA). Whitley is a co-author of “The Power of Debt: Identity and Collective Action in the Age of Finance,” published by the UCLA Luskin Institute on Inequality & Democracy, and a forthcoming article in Transgender Studies Quarterly


Yi Wuwu

PhD The New School for Social Research, New York

Dissertation:  "The Sea and the Mirror:  Essayings in Deterritorialization and Mimesis"

Yi Wu is a continental philosopher whose work intersects with world literature and global history. Her research re-interprets the terra-centric western history of philosophy from the perspective of the maritime. By holding up the sea as mirror to western philosophy understood as a form of historicity and coloniality, Yi works toward a hermeneutic method of re-writing the history of philosophy from a non-western and feminist perspective, as a genealogy and archeology of the diluvial. Yi’s writing has appeared in The Journal of Speculative Philosophy, Idealistic Studies, Politeia, Coriolis, Graduate Faculty Philosophy Journal and Clio. Her first book The Sea as Mirror (Diaphanes, 2021) traces the absence and repressed presence of the ocean from Plato to Heidegger, employing the maritime as a hermeneutic lens to understand the drive of philosophy as response to and moment within the impetus of western colonization. Yi is working on a second book project, The Concept of the Maritime: The Sea as Theory. This project investigates the maritime as a concept against concepts along four dimensions of the post-human condition: natality, wastage, differance and errancy. It argues that the maritime, utilized as the medium and agent of colonization in political and philosophical modernities, remains ultimately the un-colonizable, both the spectator and the agency of political, philosophical and psychical decolonization.