about

I am an Assistant Professor of English and Film & Media Studies at Amherst College. My research and teaching focus on documentary, voice, and humanitarianism, and more broadly deal with feminist and postcolonial media, critical theory, and cultural studies. I also serve on the board of trustees of the Flaherty Seminar, the longest continuously running annual film event devoted to creative non-fiction.

My book, Immediations: The Humanitarian Impulse in Documentary (2017, available from Duke University Press) examines the humanitarian impulse of global documentary interventions that aim to “give a voice to the voiceless.” In 2013-14 this project was supported by a Copeland Fellowship at Amherst College, where I was in residence as a Postdoctoral Fellow participating in a research colloquium on “Catastrophe and the Catastrophic.” Excerpts from Immediations have been published in the journals Camera Obscura and differences as “Immaterial Child Labor: Media Advocacy, Autoethnography, and the case of Born into Brothels and “Humane-itarian Interventions.” Immediations is based on my doctoral dissertation, which was awarded the Marie J. Langlois Outstanding Dissertation Prize in 2012 at Brown University.

I am currently working on a new book project tentatively titled The Skin of the Voice. This project draws on critical theories of sound and voice to develop an interdisciplinary approach to the accented voice in documentary. This project examines the relationship between listening, the auditory marks of difference, and documentary’s vocal conventions. My filmography for this project includes the work of contemporary feminist practitioners who work at the boundary of documentary and experimental film, including Trinh T. Minh-ha, Leslie Thornton, Sonali Gulati, Mounira Al Solh, and Katarina Zdjelar. Publications related to this project include “In Defense of Voicelessness: The Matter of the Voice and the Films of Leslie Thornton” in Feminist Media Histories, and “The Skin of the Voice: Acousmatic Realities, Documentary Illusions” (forthcoming in the anthology Sound Objects co-edited by Rey Chow and James Steintrager). I am also co-editor, with Genevieve Yue of a forthcoming special issue of the journal Discourse on Documentary Audibilities that is connected to this second book.

My work has been published in a number of scholarly journals, anthologies, and magazines, including World Picture, Feminist Media Histories, Film Quarterly, Camera Obscura, differences, South Asian Popular Culture, Interventions, Parallax, The Oxford Handbook of Postcolonial Studies, The Sarai Reader, and Shoppinghour Magazine.