Olyvia Christley is a fourth year PhD Candidate in the in Politics Department at the University of Virginia. Her research focuses primarily on the political psychology of gender and nativism. Her dissertation explores how implicit attitudes about gender work through nativism to drive support for radical right politics, with a particular focus on individuals living in Hungary, Poland, the United States, and the United Kingdom. Her additional research interests include public opinion towards immigration, the role of nationalism in political behavior, and the ways in which the state creates and upholds power imbalances between genders. She is especially interested in improving and expanding the ways in which we use quantitative methods to answer questions about gender.
Charles Hamilton is a third year History PhD candidate. His current project examines transnational queer antifascist movements in twentieth-century Europe particularly in the postwar period. In calling for a revolutionary queer subject, these activists emphasized the essentially antifascist nature of queer identity thereby challenging medical, popular, and even activist discourses connecting fascism with queerness. In addition to radical queer movements, antifascism, and the far right, his broader areas of interest include queer and feminist theory, nationalism, white supremacy, psychoanalysis and the human sciences, Marxism, human rights, and structural oppression and state violence. He also co-directs the Far Right and Antifascism Working Group, an interdisciplinary collective for UVA faculty and students dedicated to the study of fascism and antifascism.
Daniel Henry is a fifth year PhD candidate in the Department of Politics, specializing in race and democratic theory. His dissertation, Authoring Otherwise: Race, Writing, and Democratic Possibility under Jim Crow, explores how African American authors used writing to create spaces of democratic contestation during the Jim Crow era. In the absence of a democratic public, writing offered African American authors a site of power and agency often denied in other forums, while simultaneously producing conditions for future expression. Exploring the relation of writing to concepts such as receptivity, sound, and the human, this project centers on the work of four main authors: Anna Julia Cooper, Ida B. Wells, James Weldon Johnson, and W.E.B. Du Bois.
Meret Hofer is a 5th year PhD student in Community Psychology and Prevention Research, and is currently developing her dissertation. Broadly, her study aims to understand how police officers understand their role in the communities they serve. The main goals of her dissertation are two-fold: 1) to identify the ways in which the broader context of police work impacts officers’ approaches to policing, and 2) to consider how aspects of officers’ identities influence their perceptions of and reception by community members.
Meret is also a member of the research team at UVA’s Institute of Law, Psychiatry, and Public Policy, where her work is situated at the intersection of mental health and criminal justice. Her research at ILPPP examines system-level constraints police officers face when encountering individuals experiencing mental illness. The goal of her work is to identify needed resources that can support officers’ ability to divert individuals with mental illness away from the criminal justice system and towards community-based services.
Shira Lurie is a fifth year PhD candidate in History. Her research examines protest, dissent, and violence in the early American republic. She is particularly interested in clashes between grassroots protestors and counter-protestors and how those local incidents spread through the partisan press and affected state and national politics. Shira’s work reframes the emergence of the First Party System as a struggle over the power of citizens and the place of protest in the new nation.
Victoria Mauer is a 5th year PhD student in Community Psychology and Prevention Research and an Institute for Education Sciences predoctoral affiliate fellow at the Curry School of Education. Broadly, her research investigates prevention and intervention programming that promotes supportive educational contexts, fosters positive youth development, and prevents gender-based violence. Her dissertation will explore students’ perceptions of the climate of sexual and gender-based violence at their university. Specifically, her project aims to understand how students’ perceptions of the climate influence their attitudes towards bystander intervention programming seeking to prevent gender-based violence.
Brian Neumann is a fourth year PhD candidate in the Corcoran Department of History whose dissertation examines the political and cultural divisions in antebellum South Carolina. In the 1830s, radical South Carolinians began arguing that the state should nullify “oppressive” laws or secede from the Union. They mobilized a mass movement by claiming to defend slavery, patriarchy, and republican independence—a movement that culminated in the state’s secession thirty years later. Brian’s research, however, reconstructs the worldview of the South Carolinians who remained loyal to the Union. Although they faced violence and intimidation, they continued to resist their state’s turn toward radicalism. They viewed the Union as the greatest guarantor of white liberty and African American slavery, and in the 1830s many were prepared to fight against their own state in order to preserve it. By reevaluating the image of antebellum South Carolina’s political unity, Brian’s work complicates and contextualizes the story of the coming of the Civil War.
Samantha Wallace—I want my research on contemporary literary treatments of sexual and gender-based violence to speak to a nexus of practical, theoretical, historical, and activist concerns. Within the English Department at the University of Virginia, my research has focused on representations of sexual violence within the last thirty years through an examination of a broad archive of media, from literary fiction to tweets. As a member of the Institute for the Humanities and Global Culture’s Public Humanities Lab, I have led projects geared towards building feminist community, including a community-based feminism reading group. With my PVI Fellowship funding, I will conduct archival work at Harvard’s Schlesinger Library to further excavate the history of the New York Radical Feminist speak-outs of the 1970s, as one origin point for my research on the intertwining of anti-rape activism and the generic form of testimony within contemporary narratives recounting sexual assault.