My current research explores how conceptualizations of the state, especially in the modern social sciences, hold underlying normative and practical implications for how we understand democracy as a theory of society and as a political practice. More broadly, I am interested in questions of sovereignty and authority, political crisis, and democratization as a political phenomenon. My peer reviewed work has appeared in journals such as Polity, Contemporary Political Theory, and Political Research Quarterly.
My book project, provisionally titled The Rediscovery of the State: Postwar Liberalism and the Promise of Critical Social Science, examines how the changing understandings and usages of the concept of "the state" in twentieth century American political science reflected the relationship between social scientific theorizing about political power and the hegemony of postwar liberalism. I show how the renewed interest in Marxian and Weberian theories of the state as an object of study during the 1970s-1980s stemmed from the crisis of the postwar liberal model, and how this intellectual shift underscores the modern nexus between liberal democracy, capitalism, and the state.
I received my Ph.D. (2017) from the Department of Political Science at Indiana University, Bloomington. My dissertation, Discipline, Knowledge, and Critique: Marxist Theory and the Revival of the State in American Political Science, 1968-1989, was awarded the 2018 New Political Science Dissertation Award from the New Political Science section of the American Political Science Association.