I am an Assistant Professor in the Medical Humanities and Health Studies Program at Indiana University-Purdue University, Indianapolis (IUPUI).
My specialty is history of medicine and mental health care, and my research examines the history of patient-staff relationships in mental institutions, in both France and the U.S. I explore the limitations and failures of past mental health reforms, as well as scientific innovation, creative expression, and community-building inside psychiatric facilities.
Currently, I am working on two book projects. The first is a study of how deinstitutionalization affected patients with intellectual disabilities at Indiana’s Central State Hospital in the 1990s (with Emily Beckman and Modupe Labode). This project was inspired by the patient-produced newsletter, The DDU Review. The second is based on my doctoral dissertation (IU Bloomington, 2015). This project examines the roles played by art and science in the reform of French psychiatry at the turn of the twentieth century, focusing on the work of Doctors Auguste Marie, Edouard Toulouse, and Paul Serieux at the Villejuif Asylum near Paris.
Courses I offer in the IUPUI Medical Humanities program and Department of History include The History of Medicine and Public Health, Introduction to Medical Humanities. and Disability Studies and the Medical Humanities.
In my teaching and research I strive for public engagement, drawing on my experience as Director of Public Programs at the Indiana Medical History Museum (2014-2017). Since January 2018 I’ve coordinated the Indiana Women’s Prison History Project, in which currently and formerly incarcerated women are producing critical historical studies of gender, sexuality, and incarceration in Indiana.