Scholarship

Refereed Articles

“Doctored Images: Enacting ‘Pain-Work’ in John Berger and Jean Mohr’s A Fortunate Man (1967).” Journal of Medical Humanities (2020). doi: 10.1007/s10912-020-09671-1

“Objective Witnesses: Disabling the Posthuman in Harry Parker’s Anatomy of a Soldier. ” Journal of Literary and Cultural Disability Studies (2021). https://doi.org/10.3828/jlcds.2021.5

“‘On These Little Islands, These Things Happen’: Leprosy, Race. and Postcolonial Fictions of Chacachacare.” Literature and Medicine (forthcoming Fall 2022)

Scholarly Reviews

Anjuli Fatima Raza Kolb’s Epidemic Empire: Colonialism, Contagion, and Terror, 1817-2020. Literature and Medicine (2021)

Book Project

“Parasitic Empires: Immunity, Insularity, Inter-imperiality, 1870 – 2020.”

The dissertation is the basis for my first book, tentatively called “Parasitic Empires: Immunity, Insularity, Inter-Imperiality, 1870-2020.” This project—responding to the spatial, oceanic, and inter-imperial turns in postcolonial studies—is a cultural history of racialization and infectious disease in Anglo-American maritime colonies as well as a critical examination of this history’s postcolonial afterlives. I argue that U.S. actors at the turn of the century—for instance, immigration authorities, shipping companies, missionaries, and the Rockefeller International Health Board—were “parasitic” of British imperial projects, with which they collaborated and competed for suzerainty in the tropics. I therefore do not just compare these two powerful Anglophone empires but trace their enduring ties, linkages, rivalries, and solidarities, a phenomenon that I call “imperial parasitism.” This imperial parasitism, centered around the racialized and diseased body, gives the lie to the myth of American isolationism or insularity in imperial geopolitics of the belle époque and interwar years. In other words, the inter-imperial discourse of parasitology bespoke a notably parasitic Anglophone imperial formation.

While I follow recent moves by the most significant scholars to place the body at the center of imperial power, I also contend that Global Anglophone studies must take U.S. empire seriously as an actor in late British imperial hegemony. The first part of the book shows how the rise of germ theory provided transatlantic writers from 1870 to1930—such as Bram Stoker, Joseph Conrad, Jack London, and Mark Twain—a new vocabulary to not only justify imperial dominance but to also reimagine Anglo-Saxon identity and Anglo-American relations. In the second part of the book, each chapter engages with postcolonial literary representations of racialized tropical disease in colonized island spaces—malaria in the Andaman Islands and leprosy in Trinidad—thereby literalizing the metaphor of geopolitical “insularity” so often used to describe U.S. international stances before 1945. Thus, the book theorizes these insular spaces and the British and U.S. empires as para/sites, reading them next to each other and making legible the flows of imperial power and racializing medical discourses between them.

Public-Facing Scholarship and Criticism

“Book Reviews: The United States, India, and Global (Anti)Imperialism. Pyriscence, June 2021.

“High Theory” Podcast Discussion on Jasbir K. Puar’s The Right to Maim, April 2021.

“The Great White Reunion: On Duncan Bell’s ‘Dreamworlds of Race.’” Los Angeles Review of Books, January 2021.

“Im(m/p)unity as Defense: The Killing of John Allen Chau.” Synapsis: A Health Humanities Journal, November 2020.

“Painted Veils, Distracted Hearts: Reading the Cuckolded Physician in Literature.” Synapsis: A Health Humanities Journal, August 2020.