I am delighted to return to East Tennessee as a Visiting Lecturer in History at Maryville College after eight years of living in western Massachusetts. I hail from Birmingham, Alabama and have lived in a wide range of locales from Berlin, Germany to Fort Worth, Texas to Székesfehérvár, Hungary. As an alumna of a liberal arts college, I benefited from the close mentorship of my professors, who inspired me to pursue my love of history, languages, cultures, and teaching. I hope to likewise support Maryville College’s students by promoting creativity and curiosity in and out of the classroom.
I specialize in the history of Central Europe as well as modern China and religious history. I teach courses in modern European and world history, in particular, Germany, East Asia, and memory. I believe that learning history should be comparative and interdisciplinary and encourage students to make connections to other courses and their experiences outside of the classroom. My students and I pursue global perspectives while simultaneously practicing place-based education to promote interest in the histories and cultures of our local communities.
My research mirrors this cross-disciplinary and transnational approach to learning about history. I am currently at work on a book that examines the contribution of Roman Catholic religious orders to socialist society in the Eastern Bloc. My work has been supported by the Fulbright Student Program, the German Academic Exchange Service, the Free University in Berlin, the University of Massachusetts Graduate School and History Department, and the Central European History Society.
As a nature enthusiast, I’m excited to live near the Smoky Mountains. East Tennessee’s biodiversity and history provide inspiration for my next project which examines connections between religion, culture, and ecology at Lake Balaton in Hungary. When I’m not writing or teaching, I enjoy long-distance running and hiking.
“Under the Habit: Resistance of Catholic Sisters against East German State Authority in the 1950s,” in Gendering Post-1945 German History: Entanglements. Friederike Bruehoefener, Karen Hagemann, and Donna Harsch, eds. Oxford and New York: Berghahn Books, 2019.