Participant Info

First Name
Last Name
Harvard University
Website URL
United States, Pacific, Empire, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Religion, Pacific Islander Studies, Mission Studies, ABCFM, Militarism, Nuclear Testing, US Foreign Policy, US in the World, Religious Freedom, Religion & Racialization, American Exceptionalism, World War II, Cold War, Imperialism, Theology, Indigenous Activism, World Christianity, Climate Change
Additional Contact Information

Personal Info

About Me

Carleigh Beriont has a PhD from Harvard University, where she studied and teaches about the history of American religions and politics. Her research focuses on United States empire, missionaries, and militarism in the Pacific during the 19th and 20th centuries. She received an MTS in Religion, Ethics, and Politics from Harvard Divinity School and a BA from Mount Holyoke College. Previously, Carleigh lived and worked in the Republic of the Marshall Islands.

She is currently revising her first book manuscript, which explores the history of Protestant Christianity and American imperialism in the Marshall Islands during the 19th and 20th centuries.

In her work, she seeks to challenge the dominant periodizations and spatial and discursive formations of the United States and U.S. empire, particularly those that depict the Pacific as a monolith, frontier, border, or vast empty space, situated at the periphery of the U.S. and its historiography and interrogate the political and theological implications of U.S. policy in the region, especially as it relates to nuclear testing and militarization, climate change, and migration.

Teaching & Research

Religion & U.S. Empire; Religion & Politics; Religion & American Foreign Affairs; American Religious History; Religion & the American West; Pacific & Oceania Studies; Indigenous Epistemologies; Religion, Ethnicity, & Race; Militarism & Nuclear Policy; Climate Change; Religious Freedom in the U.S. & World

Selected Publications

Carleigh Beriont, “The Children’s Mission Ship: The 1856 American Board Mission to Micronesia and the Making of a New American West,” Pacific Historical Review 92, no. 3 (Summer 2023): 342-363

“In God’s Hands: The Marshall Islands—Missionaries, Nuclear Testing, and Climate Change.” Epicenter—Weatherhead Center for International Affairs, Harvard University (May 2021)

“In Translation: Religious Freedom, Democracy, and U.S. Empire from the Perspective of the Postwar Pacific Islands (Roundtable),” American Religion (Spring 2020) 

“‘For the Good of Mankind’: Atomic Exceptionalism, Religion, and United States Empire in the Postwar Pacific” in A Companion to American Religious History, ed. Ben Park (Wiley-Blackwell, 2020): 287-298.

Recent Publications
Media Coverage
Country Focus
United States, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Pacific Islands, US Territories
Expertise by Geography
Pacific, United States
Expertise by Chronology
19th century, Modern, 20th century, 21st century
Expertise by Topic
Colonialism, Environment, Indigenous Peoples, Migration & Immigration, Military, Politics, Race, Religion, World War I, World War II