I was born and raised in a small farming community in the Netherlands. Even though I had to bike to school for an hour every day, and we did not have internet until I was sixteen, the influx of news from the United States was constant and instantaneous. I did not need geographical proximity or unlimited access: the 8 o’ clock news sufficed. The United States therefore never seemed far away to me, even though it was not until college that I first visited—I spent a summer in San Francisco for a language course. While this is not the only reason I study American Studies, I like to think that this is when the first seed was planted for what has now become both a passion and a professional pursuit.
I am currently a fourth year PhD student at Brown University in Providence, RI, where I study twentieth century American literatures, film, and critical race theory, with a focus on African American and Asian American texts. I am especially interested in the ways in which racial ambiguity has been represented in literature and film, and how this construct has been mediated in an international and multiethnic context. Broadly speaking, I look at the way in which culture moves during the Cold War era, and how U.S. cultural productions were encoded and decoded internationally.
You can take a look at my education here, and at the various causes I have taught here. I am currently working on my dissertation, titled Give Me Color: Fictions of Racial Ambiguity. The first part of that title is an homage to my favorite Jhumpa Lahiri story.
Right before coming to Brown, I taught U.S. history and world history at Phillips Academy Andover. In fall 2016 I interned at The M.I.T.Press, as publishing and editing are also fields that very much interest me.
While much of what I believe in politically and socially is expressed in my work (otherwise I would not be doing it), there are also other things that occupy my mind. I am a twin sister. I love dogs, especially golden retrievers. I dream of hiking Ireland, and hiked the Camino del Norte with my best friend a few summers ago. I spend many hours watching television.