Howard Brick is Louis Evans Professor of History and Director of the Eisenberg Institute for Historical Studies at the University of Michigan. His works include Daniel Bell and the Decline of Intellectual Radicalism (1986), Age of Contradiction: American Thought and Culture in the 1960s (1998), Transcending Capitalism: Visions of a New Society in Modern American Thought (2006), and Radicals in America: The U.S. Left since the Second World War (with Christopher Phelps, 2015).
Elspeth Brown is an associate professor of history at the University of Toronto. She is a cultural and business historian of the twentieth-century United States, with a special interest in the relationship between the market, the body, and commercial culture. Her early research concerned the rationalization of the body and the role that photography played in producing a positivist discourse that naturalized newly codified economic relations, resulting in The Corporate Eye (Hopkins, 2005); Cultures of Commerce (Palgrave, 2006), co-edited with Catherine Gudis and Marina Moskowitz; and Feeling Photography (Duke, 2014), co-edited with Thy Phu. More recently, she has been researching the relationship between the market and the body through the lens of the modeling industry in the twentieth-century United States.
Kathleen Brown, a professor of history at the University of Pennsylvania, is a historian of gender, and race in early America and the Atlantic World. Educated at Wesleyan and the University of Wisconsin, Madison, she is author of Good Wives, Nasty Wenches, and Anxious Patriarchs: Gender, Race, and Power in Colonial Virginia (Chapel Hill, 1996), which won the Dunning Prize of the American Historical Association for best book by a junior scholar. Her most recent book, Foul Bodies: Cleanliness in Early America (Yale, 2009), explores the relationships among health, domestic labor, and ideals for beauty, civilization, and spiritual purity during the period between Europe’s Atlantic encounters and the American Civil War. Brown is also author of numerous articles and essays. Her current research focuses on the exchange of goods, materials, and ideas about health, sexuality, and the body in the early modern Atlantic.
Nathan Connolly, a visiting associate professor of history, social and cultural analysis at New York University, writes about the interplay between racism, capitalism, politics, and the built environment in the twentieth century. His work pays special attention to people’s overlapping understandings of property rights and civil rights in the United States and the wider Americas. His first book, A World More Concrete: Real Estate and the Remaking of Jim Crow South Florida, received, among other awards, the 2015 Liberty Legacy Foundation Book Award from the Organization of American Historians and the 2014 Kenneth T. Jackson Book Award from the Urban History Association. Connolly is currently working on two projects. Four Daughters: An America Story, is a collective biography covering three generations of a single family, following the lives of four women of color whose forebears migrated from the Caribbean to the United States by way of Britain between the 1930s and 1990s. Black Capitalism: The “Negro Problem” and the American Economy offers the first sweeping account of how black economic success shaped the way Americans and immigrants understood the possibilities offered by capitalism in the United States.
Jay Cook is a professor of history and American culture at the University of Michigan. Cook has taught US history and American studies at the University of Michigan since 2001. His publications include The Arts of Deception: Playing with Fraud in the Age of Barnum (2001); The Colossal P.T. Barnum Reader (2005); and The Cultural Turn in U.S. History: Past, Present & Future (2008). He has also published articles in a number of leading journals, including the American Historical Review, the Journal of American History, American Quarterly, and Raritan. At present, he is finishing a very large book (to be published by W.W. Norton & Co) on the first waves of African-American artists, writers, and activists to strategize their careers in global markets. He is also working on a collection of conceptual essays, The New Materialism: Between Culture and Economy in US Historiography, to be published by the University of Chicago Press.
Konstantin Dierks is an associate professor of history at Indiana University Bloomington. His first book, In My Power: Letter Writing and Communications in Early America (2009), focused on the cultural, social, economic, and political history of letter writing and communications in the early anglophone Atlantic World. Tentatively entitled “American Global Imaginaries, 1670-1870,” his new book project traces the shift in American geographical understandings of the wider world across the transformation of colonial into post-revolutionary America.
Geoff Eley is Karl Pohrt Distinguished University Professor of Contemporary History at the University of Michigan.Some of his works include Nazism as Fascism: Violence, Ideology, and the Ground of Consent in Germany 1930-1945 (2014), A Crooked Line: From Cultural History to the History of Society(2005), and Forging Democracy: The History of the Left in Europe, 1850-2000 (2002).
Nan Enstad is a professor of history at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where she teaches courses in gender history, cultural history, and transnational methods. She is the author of Ladies of Labor, Girls of Adventure: Working Women, Popular Culture, and Labor Politics at the Turn of the Twentieth Century (1999) and is writing a book tentatively entitled “The Jim Crow Cigarette: Following Tobacco Road from North Carolina to China and Back.” Her work presents a cultural history of the corporation as a defining but, until recently, largely naturalized aspect of American life.
Alison Isenberg is a professor of history and Co-Director of the Princeton-Mellon Initiative in Architecture, Urbanism, and the Humanities at Princeton University. She writes and teaches about nineteenth- and twentieth-century American society, with particular attention to the transformation of cities, and to the intersections of culture, the economy, and place. Isenberg’s book, Downtown America: A History of the Place and the People Who Made It (University of Chicago Press, 2004) received several awards: the Ellis Hawley prize from the Organization of American Historians; Historic Preservation Book Prize from Mary Washington University; Lewis Mumford Prize from the Society for American City and Regional Planning History; and an Honor Book award from the New Jersey Council for the Humanities. She is currently completing two longstanding projects, Dollars and Design: Contesting Redevelopment in Postwar San Francisco, and Second-Hand Cities: Race and Region in the Antique Americana Trade, from the Civil War to Urban Renewal. Her new research focuses on urban unrest in the 1960s.
Katherine Lennard (University of Michigan) is currently a Mary I. and David D. Hunting Family Fellow at the University of Michigan’s Institute for the Humanities, where she is completing her PhD in the department of American Culture. She holds a BFA in Costume Design from the Theatre School of DePaul University, and an MA in Visual and Critical Studies from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Her dissertation, “Uniform Threat: Manufacturing the Ku Klux Klan’s Visible Empire, 1905-1937,” examines the industrial production of white supremacy through a cultural history of Klan regalia in the early twentieth century.
Rachel Miller (University of Michigan) is a PhD candidate in American Culture at the University of Michigan, where she is at work on a dissertation on the nineteenth-century roots of the creative economy, currently titled “Capital Entertainment: Creative Labor and the Modern Stage, 1860-1930.”
Susan Scott Parrish is an associate professor in the Department of English and the Program in the Environment at the University of Michigan. Broadly conceived, she is interested in the interrelated issues of race, the environment, and epistemology in the Atlantic world from 1492 up through the twentieth century, with a particular emphasis on the plantation zones. Her first book, American Curiosity: Cultures of Natural History in the Colonial British Atlantic World (UNCP/OIEAHC, 2006), studied the Anglophone transatlantic networks and rhetorics of the natural sciences, reassessing the Enlightenment from a colonial perspective. It was awarded the Ralph Waldo Emerson Prize and the Jamestown Prize. Her second book, The Flood Year 1927: A Cultural History (forthcoming with Princeton University Press in fall 2016), takes for its subject the most publicly engrossing US environmental catastrophe of the twentieth century. Not only was the “Great Mississippi Flood of 1927” foundational to the literary careers of Richard Wright and William Faulkner, a signal episode in the journalistic careers of W.E.B. Du Bois, Ida B. Wells, Walter White, H.L. Mencken and Walter Benjamin, and a key event in the histories of Vaudeville and Blues music, but it also gave public urgency to questions about North-South relations, the ongoing unfree status of African Americans, the scientific management of and capital investment in the natural world, and the very nature of industrialism’s “second nature.” She also examines the complex ways in which modern disasters make publics through mediation.
Seth Rockman is an associate professor of history at Brown University. Born in Indiana and raised in San Francisco, Seth Rockman received a BA from Columbia University and completed his PhD at UC-Davis. After several years on the faculty of Occidental College in Los Angeles, Rockman joined the Brown History Department in 2004. His 2009 book Scraping By: Wage Labor, Slavery, and Survival in Early Baltimore won the OAH’s Merle Curti Prize, the Philip Taft Labor History Book Award, and the HL Mitchell Prize from the Southern Historical Association. Rockman is currently writing a new book about shoes, shovels, hats, and hoes manufactured in the North for use on Southern slave plantations. Additionally, he and Sven Beckert are co-editing Slavery’s Capitalism: A New History of American Economic Development for University of Pennsylvania Press.
Jacques Vest (University of Michigan) is a PhD candidate in the University of Michigan Department of History where he is currently at work on a dissertation entitled “The Mechanized Echo: Phonographs, Capitalism, and the Metaphysics of Sound at the Dawn of 20th Century American Culture.” He is co-founder of the New Materialisms Working Group, an interdisciplinary workshop funded by the University of Michigan’s Rackham Graduate School.
Andrew Zimmerman is a professor of history at The George Washington University. He completed his PhD in History at the University of California, San Diego, and was a Mellon fellow in history at the Society of Fellows in the Humanities at Columbia University. He is currently working on a global history of the American Civil War.