I am interested in how powerful institutions influence our everyday experiences, assumptions, and ideas. I am particularly drawn to issues surrounding crime, punishment, law, religion, morality, and illness.
One of my areas of expertise is in the death penalty. As part of my doctoral research, I spent two years watching hundreds of hours of death penalty trials across the United States. If you want to know how a courthouse in Lubbock, TX compares to one in Brooklyn, NY, I'm a good person to ask.
I’ve also co-written a play titled “To Be Honest,” drawn from 172 qualitative interviews with Texans during the 2016 Presidential election. With my collaborators, it is the first script for an interdisciplinary program called “Social Research Theatre.” I believe that the arts are an integral part of the social world, and I love working with and thinking about performance and representation.
My aim in teaching is to help students see the social world as filled with opportunities to ask and (begin to) answer important questions. Students who take my classes can also expect help in becoming sharper readers, writers, critical thinkers, and creators.
Ph.D. - New York University
M.A. - Tulane University
B.A. - Wesleyan University
“To Be Honest: Voices on Islam During the 2016 Presidential Election” A one-act play co-authored with William Christ and Habiba Noor, 2017.
“Mourners in the Court: Victims in Death Penalty Trials, Through the Lens of Performance” Law & Social Inquiry: Journal of the American Bar Foundation, 2017.
"Citizenship and Punishment: Situating Death Penalty Jury Sentencing."Punishment and Society: The International Journal of Penology 13, 3: 333-353, 2011.