The Stettheimer Dollhouse: A Life and Salon in Miniature

Winner of the BAAS Postgraduate Essay Prize

For twenty years, the Stettheimer salon (1915-1935) reigned as one of the central cultural hubs of 20th-century New York. Led by sisters Florine, Ettie, and Carrie, the salon cultivated an influential network of modernist artists, writers, and musicians, which would inspire and facilitate most of the sisters’ creative endeavours, including Carrie’s dollhouse replica of the salon: the Stettheimer dollhouse. An amalgamation of both Stettheimer salon locations, the dollhouse functions as a microcosm of the Stettheimer salon. Notable salon guests contributed a number of miniature paintings and sculptures to the dollhouse, whilst also providing Carrie with encouragement to persevere with the project. Continue reading

In The Fields Of Democracy: The Midwest In World War I

World War I generated a new narrative in American national identity. The easterly crusade to save the Old World, or, in President Wilson’s words, to make the world ‘safe for democracy’, reversed the nation’s foundational movement of western exploration and settlement leading away from Europe.[i] As Joseph Urgo describes it, ‘[t]he close of the old frontier’ was followed by ‘the opening of the global imperial frontier’, inaugurating America’s status as a superpower. Continue reading

Application Advice: BAAS Postgraduate Travel Award

I have applied for the BAAS Postgraduate Travel Award twice, and this year I was lucky enough to win. The Award contributed towards a research trip to the United States to access archival source material and undertake oral histories for my thesis, which centres on attempts at multiracial organising around reproductive rights since the second wave of feminism. Continue reading

Award Experience: BAAS Postgraduate Travel Award

When I found out I had been awarded the BAAS Postgraduate Travel Award my first feeling was, unsurprisingly, elation. As a student of nineteenth-century U.S. politics I viewed my proposed two week visit to the Library of Congress, Washington D.C., as a pilgrimage to my research Mecca. But beneath my excitement was a ripple of uncertainty. Continue reading

American Studies across Borders: International Opportunities for PhDs and Postdocs

International experience has become a prerequisite for success in academia – but depending on how you look at it, this can be exciting and terrifying in equal measure. I’m launching a new USSO series about how to take your research across borders, talking to representatives of those institutions and programs that can help PhDs and postdocs build an international profile. The Terra Foundation for American Art is my first interview partner. Continue reading

Application Advice: Gerald Ford Presidential Foundation

This month I am visiting the United States for eighteen days to conduct primary source research central to my PhD thesis, ‘Spies, civil liberties and the Senate: the 1975 Church Committee’. It is the first time I have been to the US, and it is mainly due to the award I received from the Gerald Ford Presidential Foundation that I am able to spend such a significant amount of time there. Continue reading

Application Advice: Eccles Centre European Postgraduate Award

Writing applications can be a scary undertaking, especially if you have only recently graduated and cannot yet boast with an impressive list of publications or extensive work experience in any specific area. You might even feel that you have not achieved anything truly noteworthy so far – except, maybe, making it through college alive. Continue reading

Applying for Research Funding: Four Key Principles

I have had some success in this area, having raised funds during my PhD and the first five years of my career from the AHRC, BAAS, the British Academy, Duke University, the University of Edinburgh, the Fulbright Commission, and the University of Nottingham. I have also served on the committee of HOTCUS, for which I have judged postgraduate travel awards on several occasions. Continue reading