Ph.D. University of Pennsylvania
Emma Stapely (B.A. Northwestern; M.Phil University of Cambridge; Ph.D. University of Pennsylvania) specializes in American literatures before 1900 and the long 18th-century Anglophone Atlantic. Emma is particularly interested in the so-called “Age of Revolutions” (1770-1820). Her work ponders how literature might complicate linear historical narratives of this period, as well as regular conceptions of political struggle that have been its legacy. Emma’s book project, Insurgent Remains: Afterlives of the American Revolution, 1770-1820,examines literary accounts of the American Revolution produced in the decades immediately following its official conclusion, focusing on texts that challenge the war’s dominant associations with the achievement of national sovereignty and the triumph of progressive values. Reading materials from across the Anglophone Atlantic world that reflect on the American war as an occasion of loss, this project argues for a reconsideration of “flat” literary and visual forms as sites of insurgent potential that broaden our available vocabularies for describing revolutionary experiences of time, politics, and subjectivity.