Washington University in St. Louis

Department of English / Program in American Culture Studies

Lecturer, 2018-present.

Louisiana State University 

Department of English

Assistant Professor of English, Program in Film and Media Arts, 2013-2018.


University of Pennsylvania

Ph.D. in English Literature, May 2013.
Graduate Certificate in Cinema Studies, May 2013.

University of Virginia

M.A. in English Literature, May 2007.

Amherst College

B.A. in English, Magna Cum Laude, May 2005.


The Disappearing Christ: Secularism in the Silent Era, Columbia University Press, forthcoming, 2019.

“The Televisual Novel,” American Literature in Transition, 2000-2010, ed. Rachel Greenwald Smith, Cambridge University Press, November 2017..

“‘A Rare and Wonderful Sight’: Secularism and Visual Historiography in Ben-Hur,” J19: The Journal of 19th Century Americanists, Fall 2015.

Review of Closed Circuits: Screening Narrative Surveillance by Garrett Stewart and Surveillance Cinema by Catherine Zimmer, Film Quarterly, forthcoming Fall 2015.

“The Time of the Semipublic Intellectual,” with Lili Loofbourow, PMLA, March 2015.

Co-Editor, “The Semipublic Intellectual: Academia, Criticism, and the Internet Age,” PMLA Special Section, March 2015.

“Spectacular Realism: The Ghost of Jesus Christ in D.W. Griffith’s Vision of History,” Adaptation, Volume 5, Issue 2, September 2012.

“Slapstick ‘Sexposition’: Girls vs. the Body Politics of HBO,” In Media Res, January 9, 2013.


ATLAS Award, Louisiana Board of Regents, 2016-2017.

Robert Udick Distinguished Undergraduate Teaching Award, LSU, 2016.

First Book Institute Fellowship, Penn State University, Summer 2015.

LSU Council on Research Summer Research Grant, 2014

Dean’s Scholar Award, School of Arts and Sciences, University of Pennsylvania, 2013.

Dissertation Completion Fellowship, School of Arts and Sciences, University of Pennsylvania, 2012-13.

GAPSA Provost’s Award for Interdisciplinary Innovation, 2011

Andrew W. Mellon Graduate Research Fellowship, Penn Humanities Forum, University of Pennsylvania, 2010-2011.

Benjamin Franklin Fellowship, 2007-2012.

Thomas J. Griffis Prize for Best Essay by a First-Year Graduate Student, Department of English, University of Virginia, 2006.


Panels Organized

“Long/Form: Varieties of Cinematic Time,” MLA 2016, Austin, TX.

“Multimedia Realisms,” MLA 2015, Vancouver, BC.

“The Semi-Public Intellectual: Academia, Criticism, and the Internet Age,” MLA 2014, Chicago, IL.


Invited Talks

“The Disappearing Christ: Secularism and the Cinema of Attractions,” Sites of Religious and Secular Interaction Symposium, University of Pittsburgh Humanities Center, Pittsburgh, PA, April 2015.

“A Whole Lot of Beans: Charlie Chaplin’s The Immigrant,” Immigration: Issues and Experiences, LSU, March 2014.

“Jesus was a Crossmaker: Scorsese’s Last Temptation of Christ.” Philadelphia Cathedral Film Series, March 2012.

“Tricks and Actualities: The Passion Play Film, 1898-1912,” Penn Cinema Studies Colloquium, September 2011.

“The Most Marvelous Thing to Watch: Spiritualism, Skepticism, and U.S. Culture,” Medical Humanities Lecture Series, Penn School of Medicine, March 2010.

Conference Papers

“Just Like Heaven: Bill Morrison’s Post-cinematic Postsecular,” Ends of Cinema Conference, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, May 2018.

“Postfilmic, Postsecular: Mel Gibson’s (Un)subtle Effects,” SCMS, Chicago, IL, March 2017.

“Medium Panic: Jennifer Egan’s TV Eye,” MLA, Philadelphia, PA, January 2017.

“Cycles and Squares: Early Cinema’s Historical Frames,” MLA, Austin, TX, January 2016.

“The Cliché Archive: Bruce Barton and Popular Secularism,” New Theoretical Approaches to Religion and Modernism, Modernist Studies Association, Pittsburgh, PA, November 2014.

“Variations on Variations: Helen DeWitt, Seven Samurai, and Fragmentary Viewing,” Society of Cinema and Media Studies, Seattle, WA, March 2014.

“Forgetting the Present: Secularization and the Temporality of the Passion Play Film, 1898-1912,” Society of Cinema and Media Studies, Chicago, IL, March 2013.

Ben-Hur’s Historicism,” Futures of American Studies Institute, Dartmouth College, Hanover, NH, June 2012.

“Kingdom of Heaven, 1897: Temporalities of the Social Gospel,” C19: Society of Nineteenth-Century Americanists Conference, Berkeley, CA, April 2012.

“W.E.B. Du Bois’s Black Christ Cycle,” Religion and Modernism Seminar. Modernist Studies Association Conference, Buffalo, NY, October 2011.

“If Christ Came to _______: Contemporizing Scripture at the Turn of the Century,” The KJV and 19th Century American Literature Seminar, The King James Bible and its Cultural Afterlife Conference, Columbus, Ohio, May 2011

“’Men will see visions again’: Theologies of Early Cinema,” Theorizing Visual/Textual Study Seminar.  Modernist Studies Association Conference, Victoria, BC, November 2010.

“Turnips and Bibles: Resistance, Revision, and Reform in Zitkala-Sa’s American Indian Stories.” C19: Society of Nineteenth-Century Americanists Conference, State College, PA, May 2010.

“Liberation Exegetics: John Jea’s Transatlantic Embodiment of Lazarus.” American Society of Eighteenth Century Studies Conference, Richmond, VA, March 2009.

“The Harmonist: The Narrative of Celebrity in Henry Ward Beecher’s Life of Jesus.” International Conference on Narrative, Washington, D.C., March 2007.

“Jesus in Chicago: Christian Socialism and the Laboring of the Christ.” Midwest Modern Language Association, Chicago, IL, November 2006.

“Jesus in Chicago.” Futures of American Studies Institute: Re-configurations of American Studies, Dartmouth College, Hanover, NH, June 2006.

“The Americanization of Joseph Cinque: Steven Spielberg’s Amistad and the Popular Narrative of Trauma.” Worlding the Text, Charlottesville, VA. April 2006.