This is the first of what I hope will be many posts by me on the subjects of American history and video games. First, I suppose I should introduce myself. Most of this is covered in the Bio.
I earned a B.A. at Rutgers in 2006 (history-political science double major, English minor), and I received my M.A. in history at the University of Delaware in 2009. Currently I’m a doctoral candidate at Delaware and I’m enrolled in the Museum Studies Program. Between my coursework and my teacher’s assistant assignments I have been fortunate to work with such illustrious names as Peter Kolchin, Arwen Mohun, Susan Strasser, David Pong, and Jonathan Russ, not to mention my wonderful and supportive doctoral advisor, Katherine Grier.
My research interests include American popular culture, Material Culture Studies, and the history of technology. My research between undergraduate and graduate work has run the gamut from studies of William Jennings Bryan’s role in the Fundamentalist crusade against evolution during the 1920s to the public health response to the 1918 influenza epidemic in Philadelphia to the manufacture of 19th century straw hats to studies of video games. It is the latter subject that I have taken as my specialty and I am currently putting together my dissertation prospectus on a cultural history of video games in America.
I’ve grown up playing video games since I was very young and I’ve followed them as a hobby and now as a research interest. In addition to collecting classic games and systems and keeping up with the current generation I have also presented at several graduate conferences and have had a paper accepted at the Southwest Texas PCA/ACA conference.
Video games are a cultural phenomenon that is recently getting the academic interest it deserves. It is a rapidly developing, international, multidisciplinary field that has really begun to take careful look at what for many has become a lifetime obsession. In the posts to come I will write on my own research as well as draw attention to some of the great work other people are adding to the field. Moreover, I will try to offer a historical prospective on current issues affecting the video game community. I hope that this blog will become a useful source of information and provocative discussion for fellow students and enthusiasts of electronic entertainment.