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Assistant Professor of History
Early Modern Europe
I joined the Tufts history department in January 2008. Previously I had spent three years as a Junior Research Fellow at Trinity College, University of Cambridge. As much as I enjoyed England, I was delighted to return to the Boston area, which has felt like home to me for many years: I received my Ph.D. from Harvard University in 2005 and my B.A. from Wellesley College in 1996. It now feels as if I never left.
My broad research interests include early modern European history (c. 1450-1700), the history of science and medicine, and women's history. My first book, Panaceia's Daughters: Noblewomen as Healers in Early Modern Germany (University of Chicago Press, 2013) examines German princesses who became widely known and admired for their medical knowledge in the sixteenth century – and particularly for making medicinal cures. It won the 2014 Gerald Strauss Prize for Reformation History. I also co-edited a collection of essays titled Secrets and Knowledge in Medicine and Science, 1500-1800, which was published by Ashgate Press in 2011. In addition, I am working on a new book project with the working title The Poison Trials: Antidotes and Experiment in Early Modern Europe, which looks at the important role poison antidotes played in attempts to evaluate early modern cures. I am involved with the working group "Testing Drugs and Trying Cures in Early Modern Europe" at the Max Planck Institute for the History of Science in Berlin, and I co-organized (with Elaine Leong) a conference on the topic in June 2014. We expect to publish a volume of essays by conference participants as a special journal issue.
My courses cover my range of research interests. I have developed courses on Renaissance and Reformation Europe; gender and family; the history of science and medicine; and the history of the book. I teach a survey course called Science and Technology in World History as part of the IR Core, and I am also core faculty in Women', Gender, and Sexuality Studies and Environmental Studies.
Outside of work, most of my time is devoted to my two young boys. We live very close to the Tufts campus, and you may see my children running around on the President's Lawn or scooting at breakneck speed now and then. When I have time, I also very much enjoy hiking, cross-country skiing, cooking, and especially baking. Students in my seminars are sometimes beneficiaries of my baking experiments.
Early Modern Europe, the History of Science and Medicine, Women's History, the History of the Body and Sexuality
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