Digital Humanities Research Institute: Binghamton 2019


AMRITA DE is a doctoral candidate in the department of Comparative Literature at Binghamton University. Her overarching research encompasses South Asian Literatures, Critical Masculinity Studies and Studies of Digital Literacies and Social Media Platforms. Building on an interdisciplinary framework, comprising traditional literary forms (novels, short stories) and studies of digital media, her dissertation examines postcolonial (1947-present), heteronormative, Indian masculinities in context of the specificity of their caste, class, regional, lived experiences. She uncovers the processes (social, political, religious) through which the idea of 'hegemonic masculinity' comes to be socially constituted as a stable, ‘unmarked’ category, while simultaneously interrogating the common signs/signifiers associated with heteronormative masculinities at the level of everyday, linguistic practices and representations. Alongside tracing the socialization of heteronormative Indian masculinity/ies, she also reads these representations as ‘fragile’ and argues for a new theorization that conflates heteronormative masculinity with fragility.

HEATHER DEHAAN is Associate Professor and Chair of History at Binghamton University. In 2013, she published Stalinist City Planning: Professionals, Performance, and Power, which studied urban politics in provincial Russia in the 1930s. She is currently studying neighborhood relations in Baku, Azerbaijan, in the late Soviet period.

FRANCISCO GACHET PAREDES is a first-year sociology PhD student at Binghamton University and professor of political economy in the School of Economics of the Central University of Ecuador. His research interests are related to classical and contemporary debates on political economy and the agrarian question in Ecuador. His dissertation will cover the complex processes of internal migrations throughout the Andean region during the 20th century.

CARL GELDERLOOS joined the department of German and Russian Studies at Binghamton University in September 2014 after completing a Ph.D. at Cornell University in the same year. His book—Biological Modernism: The New Human in Weimar Culture (forthcoming with Northwestern University Press)—looks at the literature, photography, and philosophical anthropology of the Weimar Republic, showing how figures such as Alfred Döblin, Ernst Jünger, and Helmuth Plessner drew on discourses and tropes associated with living nature in order to redefine the human being for a modern, technological age. He has published on Alfred Döblin, Albert Renger-Patzsch, and the science fiction of East Germany, among other topics, and in the near future he plans to expand his forays into the photography of the 1920s, German language science fiction, and Philosophical Anthropology.

CHELSEA GIBSON is a PhD candidate in the Department of History at Binghamton University. Her dissertation explores the relationship between gender, political violence, and democracy by investigating the US reception of Russian terrorist women before 1917. She is currently an adjunct lecturer in both the History and German and Russian Studies departments and has also worked for many years as a student instructor in the Languages Across the Curriculum Program (LxC). In 2018, she won the Council Foundation Award, which recognizes public service by a BU student and in 2017, she received the Graduate Student Excellence Award in Teaching. She has also received several federal grants to support her Russian language study, including a 2017 Critical Language Scholarship to Vladimir, Russia. She currently is the Editor-in-Chief for H-SHGAPE and edits for the SHGAPE blog.

MELISSA HARDESTY studies gender, sexuality, and kinship in the wake of global capitalism. Her ethnographic study of front-line child welfare workers in a foster care adoption program explored the nature of child welfare worker expertise, which she categorizes as ethical labor, and the micropolitics of assessing parents on behalf of the state. Workers commonly struggled to square the social work professional mandate to promote social justice with the reality that child abuse and neglect is commonly confounded with poverty and racial inequality; and this occurs within a culture that understands ideal parenting as an act of love that ought to be separable from economic concerns. Her next research project will examine digital photolistings of children available for adoption through the foster care system. She is interested in the material production of adoption profiles, and the content of profiles as a mode of representation and self-presentation.

SONJA KIM is an associate professor of Asian and Asian American Studies where she teaches on Korea and East Asia. Her monograph Imperatives of Care: Women and Medicine in Colonial Korea (University of Hawai'i Press, 2019) examines medical professionalization and women's experiences in health practices in late nineteenth- and early twentieth-century Korea. Her current research projects examine the ethics of care, emotional labor of nurses, and management of the urban poor in Korea.

BRYAN KIRSCHEN is an assistant professor of Spanish and Linguistics at Binghamton University, where he holds a joint title in the Department of Romance Languages and the Linguistics Program; he is also an affiliated faculty member of the Translation Research and Instruction Program and the Department of Judaic Studies. Dr. Kirschen’s research focuses on sociolinguistics and Judeo-Spanish, particularly in the United States. His current project, Documenting Solitreo, seeks to collect, transcribe, and translate handwritten texts in Judeo-Spanish, in order to create an open access repository for documents written in the language.

ALEXANDRA LALETINA is a doctoral candidate in the Department of Teaching, Learning and Educational Leadership. Her projects and topics are interdisciplinary and include a broad spectrum of research methodologies: discourse analysis, ethnography, descriptive statistics and latent class analysis. She is currently interested in second language motivation, language learner identity and heritage language learning motivation.

NATHANIEL MATHEWS is a newcomer to the field of digital history and eager to use digital archiving methods to preserve and analyze data gathered from the Zanzibar archives on the birthplaces of several hundred naturalized Zanzibari citizens, and to organize those birthplaces onto a map of the western Indian Ocean.

ARCHANA MOHAN is a doctoral candidate in Anthropology at Binghamton University. Her research interests include exploring the implications of human interactions with technology, how innovation and entrepreneurial cultures shape social realities, urban processes and consumer practices. Archana is writing her dissertation on the role of startups in building smart, sustainable and inclusive cities in India. She analyzes the work of startups in providing sustainable and innovative solutions in Gurgaon and how class, gender, caste and locality shape access to their services. Archana currently works as a Program Assistant for the Languages Across the Curriculum Program at Binghamton University. She previously worked as a Language Resource Specialist in this program, which involved developing students’ linguistic and intercultural skills through student-centered learning. Additionally, Archana has worked as an Educational Consultant for several startups and NGOs in India.

GIOVANNA MONTENEGRO, PhD, is Assistant Professor of comparative literature and romance languages at Binghamton University. Her research interests include Latin American colonial and early modern German literature, history, and visual culture–– especially cartography. She also works on the transatlantic Avant-Garde. She is currently working on a book on the Welser bankers of Augsburg and their Venezuela colony (1528-1556) in cultural memory. A former art school graduate (SFAI, BFA Photography, 2002), Dr. Montenegro enjoys working across a variety of media. Currently, she is collaborating with Comparative Literature faculty and graduate students on a “Broadcasting World Literature” project sponsored by the IASH Public Humanities Initiative that includes podcasting and live radio. She is excited to learn new digital skills to bring to the classroom and enhance her research. You can find out more about her work at

AMANDA ORTIZ has a B.A. and an M.A. in Economics from Los Andes University in Colombia. Since then she became interested in studying Economic History. She decided to pursue a PhD in History in Binghamton after becoming convinced of the necessity and benefits of interdisciplinary research. In her current research project, she attempts to explore the role of South America in the configuration of a global economy during the eighteenth century, by exploring the spatial connections between New Granada, the Caribbean, and Europe through merchant networks. As an economist, she is familiar with the use of quantitative methods of analyses. She is interested in engaging in interdisciplinary discussions about the use of quantitative and qualitative methodologies and tools of analysis. Through the Digital Humanities Research Institute, she would like to question how to develop an interdisciplinary approach in social research while taking advantage of new technologies and computational methods.

LAURA PANGALLOZZI is a Visiting Assistant Professor in the Geography Department at Binghamton. She holds a PhD in geography from Rutgers (2014); a master’s in urban planning, also from Rutgers; a master’s in U.S. religious history from Harvard, as well as an undergraduate degree in Humanities from Yale.

JESSIE REEDER is Assistant Professor of English at Binghamton University, specializing in nineteenth-century British literature, imperialism, and form. Her first book, “The Forms of Informal Empire" (under review), asks how authors responded to British-Latin American relations in the nineteenth century by writing new narratives of transnational contact. It defamiliarizes social forms like the progress narrative and the nuclear family, asking how they both support empire and render it strange. Work from this book has been published in Studies in Romanticism and Studies in English Literature. Professor Reeder is also working on a large archival project focused on English settlers in mid-nineteenth-century South America. She has spent two summers in Santiago and Buenos Aires reading the newspapers produced by these immigrant communities, and she is collaborating with the Biblioteca Nacional de Chile and two other scholars to digitize these newspapers and produce an open-access database for nineteenth-century scholars worldwide.

KENT SCHULL is Associate Professor of History and focuses on the social and cultural history of the Ottoman Empire and modern Middle Eastern history, particularly criminal justice, socio-legal studies, forced migration, and identity. He received a PhD from UCLA and was twice a Fulbright scholar to Turkey. Currently, he is involved in preserving the archive of the American Civic Association in Binghamton NY. The ACA has assisted residents of NY's Southern Tier with immigration matters and refugee resettlement since 1939. Its archive contains over 14,000 case files, material culture, historical documents, and programming information related to ACA endeavors. Part of the preservation project is to digitize the archive and compile its metadata to assist the ACA in its mission and facilitate archival access for researchers and the public.

LISA YUN is Associate Professor of English and Asian American Studies at Binghamton. Her work concerns interracial/ethnic intersections and diaspora. Her book The Coolie Speaks presents the “coolie testimonio,” which were early narratives of Chinese migration to Cuba. Additional writings appear in Afro-Asian Connections in Latin America and Caribbean (Rowman Littlefield), Afro Asia (Duke), Transnational Blackness (Palgrave), Chinese of Latin America and Caribbean (Brill), and in journals such as AfroHispanic Review, SOULS: Critical Journal of Black Politics, Caribbean Quarterly, E-misférica, Journal of Chinese Overseas, Journal of Asian American Studies, Amerasia, MELUS, Wasafiri, Black Book Review, among others. Her poetry appears in Identity Lessons (Viking Penguin), Roots and Flowers (Holt), NuyorAsian Anthology (Temple), The Paterson Literary Review, among others. Lisa has been awarded for “exemplary community-engaged teaching” and she administers the Chang Internship, which supports students in nonprofit work in NYC. Lisa is based in Brooklyn.

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