Charles Sheeler, "Water" (1945), Image courtesy: Metropolitan Museum of Art

I direct the MA program in American Studies in the Center for the Study of Ethnicity and Race at Columbia University. I teach and advise student research on a wide variety of topics, mostly under the more "cultural" wing of American and African American Studies. 

My research has lately focused on a book manuscript about Black Romanticism (forthcoming in 2020 from Verso Books), which tells how the African American poets of the mid-nineteenth century conceived the end of slavery as a Romantic revolution. 

I also have a long-term, ongoing project about the culture of self-help, and its development since the antebellum period as a way of managing the traumatic effects of racial capitalism.

Along this way, I've written more briefly on Edgar Allan Poe, the blues, Cesar Vallejo, and so on... Most of my published work is online, but if you find something here you want to read behind a paywall you can't breach, let me know. I'm happy to send pdfs if you don't have access. I'm reachable via email.