My research explores the policies and institutions of urban criminal justice systems in the United States since the 1950s. My work is motivated by my commitments to social justice and human dignity.
This is My Jail: Local Politics and the Rise and Mass Incarceration will be out with University of Pennsylvania Press in December 2022. A history of jailing in Chicago, it focuses on how incarcerated people and their allies resisted and contested the transformation of American jails in the postwar era.
My new research project on disaster and incarceration in the 20th and 21st century builds on my interest in the liminal spaces of the carceral state. I am currently completing essays for two anthologies in African American urban and political history.
I am the author of a 2016 dissertation, Jail America: The Reformist Origins of the Carceral State. Other publications include a 2009 Masters thesis, “Grassroots Power: The Utah Eagle Forum, 1972-2009” and contributions to ABC-CLIO’s reference volume The Encyclopedia of the Sixties: A Decade of Culture and Counterculture. An essay on the oral histories I conducted as part of my MA research, “The Utah Eagle Forum: Legitimizing Political Activism as Women’s Work” was published in Oral History, Community, and Work in the American West, an anthology from the University of Arizona Press.