Participant Info

First Name
Last Name
UC Santa Barbara
Website URL
Slavery, Emancipation, Civil War & Reconstruction, American Legal History
Additional Contact Information

Personal Info

About Me

I am interested in the history of slavery and race in North America, American socio-legal history, the history of the Civil War and Reconstruction, and the development of American political institutions. I am especially interested in the multiple approaches to studying slavery, the ways in which concepts of race shaped American political and legal identities over time, and the ways in which courts have operated and intervened during times of crisis and radical transition.

My current work explores the legal history of Reconstruction. Specifically, I explore the ways in which slavery and slave law remained relevant after emancipation, the degree to which former slaves used the courts to assert and claim rights, and the role American courts played in shaping the meaning of black freedom and the ultimate outcome of Reconstruction.

Recent Publications

“What, to the law, is the former slave?” Slavery and Abolition, 40, no. 2 (June 2019): 256-270.


“‘Back into the Days of Slavery’: Slavery, Citizenship, and the Black Family in the Reconstruction Era Courtroom,” Law and History Review, 37, no.1 (February 2019): 125–61.


“Confederate Monuments Always Embodied a White Heritage of Hate,” Op-Ed, Haaretz, August 14, 2017.


“Litigating Emancipation: Legacies of Slavery in the Post-Emancipation United States,” Blog Post, London School of Economics Centre for the Study of Human Rights, October 19, 2015.

Media Coverage
Country Focus
United States
Expertise by Geography
United States
Expertise by Chronology
19th century
Expertise by Topic
American Civil War, Emancipation, Law, Politics, Race, Slavery