Postdoctoral Associates 2019-2020

Research Seminar: The University and its Public World

Jessica Mack

Jessica Mack is a historian of Latin America whose research explores urban transformation, intellectual life and the public sphere in twentieth-century Mexico. Her current book project traces the spatial reconfiguration of the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM) on its midcentury campus in Mexico City. By chronicling the planning and construction of this University City, the project explains the national university’s shifting role in Mexico’s developing revolutionary state and examines the ways in which national priorities were inscribed upon intellectual and cultural life. Reshaping the space of the university both reconfigured Mexico City’s urban landscape and realigned consent and contestation in national politics. She explores the role of the university more broadly through work in the digital humanities, university archives and public history and is a contributor to the Princeton & Slavery digital history project. She holds a B.A. in History from Wesleyan University and a Ph.D. in History from Princeton University.

Postdoctoral Associates 2018-2019

Research Seminar: Classification

Rachel Miller

Rachel Miller is a labor and cultural historian of the nineteenth-century with a particular focus on the development of the global entertainment industry. She is currently working on a book project adapted from her dissertation, "Capital Entertainment: Stage Work and the Origins of the U.S. Creative Economy, 1843 - 1912," which analyzes the transformation of commercial performance from a small-scale artisanal or folk practice into a staple product of global, export-oriented capitalism. Despite the glossy sheen of stardom that shapes our understanding of stage work, most performers were contingent staffers whose efforts—as the first pastime to become big business—generated exponential profits. Far from a niche interest or obscure curiosity, common understandings of stage work naturalized capitalism’s demands on all workers, even as it introduced prescient questions about talent, creativity, and individuality that persist today. Rachel's other research projects include the global reach of Americana, the legal history of the blackface minstrel show, and the theory and practice of historic house museums. She received a PhD in American Culture at the University of Michigan, and her work has been published in scholarly journals, edited collections, and popular outlets.

Jasmine Samara

Jasmine Samara received a PhD in Anthropology from Harvard University in 2018 and has a J.D. from Columbia Law School.  After her year at CCA, Jasmine is now a postdoctoral fellow at the Center for European and Mediterranean Studies at NYU.  She is a legal scholar and social anthropologist whose work explores debates on law, rights and identity politics in contemporary Europe. Her research and teaching focus on law and religion, the governance of minorities, gender, and the anthropology of human rights.  Her work also explores how citizens invoke, contest, or try to evade the legal regulation of minority identity as they navigate shifting lines of belonging and exclusion in the era of Greek economic crisis.