Current Projects

Orthodox Bubbles (Boston, MA: n.p., 1831).

Benevolent Empire: Evangelical Politics in the Early Republic, 1790-1840

For this book, based on my dissertation, I analyze the evangelical organizing of the Second Great Awakening as a political movement to show how many Americans in the Early Republic advocated their policy goals in explicitly religious terms. Doing so reveals how debates over how the “separation” of church and state should work were inextricably tied to conflicts over taxation, regulation, education, and most importantly: slavery. I argue that the religious aspects of these early policy battles were far more important than most historians recognize and they established the core elements of American political culture that remain with us today.

Chinese American Political and Religious Activism, 1880-1905

As a Visiting Scholar at the Asian/ Pacific/ American Institute at NYU, I am researching how Chinese American activists in New York City in the late 19th century allied themselves with sympathetic churches to combat discriminatory policies. Watch an excerpt of a walking tour of Greenwich Village I gave based on some of my findings.

New York City and Brooklyn History

I strongly believe in the power and importance of public history and am dedicated to preserving and promoting the history of my city, borough, and neighborhood. Recently, I staged a play written by a Brooklynite loyal to the British in 1776 mocking the American Revolution. Watch a performance commemorating the anniversary of the Battle of Brooklyn.