Welcome! I am an associate professor of history at the University of Michigan and have been teaching here since 1998. I did my Ph.D. at Princeton University in History (of Science) and my B.A. in Philosophy at Harvard University. I also spent three years teaching math in a school for children with dyslexia.

I work primarily in the fields of U.S. cultural/intellectual history and history of the human sciences from the mid eighteenth to the mid twentieth centuries. In addition to teaching undergraduate and graduate courses on U.S. intellectual history and STS/history of science, I also frequently teach the methodology course for new undergraduate majors and the sequence of Honors seminars for senior thesis students. For graduate students, I have supervised fields in U.S. intellectual/cultural history, history of the modern social/behavioral/human sciences, STS, and U.S. history during the long 19th Century.

My 2007 book, The Measure of Merit: Talents, Intelligence, and Inequality in the French and American Republics, 1750-1940 (Princeton: Princeton University Press), tells the story of how two new democratic republics dedicated to some version of equality turned to understandings of human nature to reinstitute inequality on a new, seemingly more “rational” footing. More details can be found here.

I am also a member of the interdisciplinary Program in Science, Technology, and Society (STS). Click on the link here to find out more about the program, including its colloquium series, undergraduate minor, and graduate certificate

Program in Science, Technology, and Society
Program in American Culture
Anthro-History Program

Fields of Study
U.S. intellectual/cultural history, history of science, history of the human sciences, 19th-century U.S. history, European intellectual history