The Liberal Art University in Hong Kong
Print Friendly | Text size: Decrease font Default font Increase font




Assistant Professor

Tel.: (852) 2616-8316
Fax.: (852) 2467-7478

Academic & Professional Qualifications

Ph.D., Yale University, History, 2014

M.Phil., Yale University, History, 2011

B.A., Princeton University, History, 2005


Areas of Interest

Twentieth-century U.S. history, Euro-American relations, colonial and imperial formations, history of the social sciences, cultural and intellectual methods, history of technology, media history.



  • Research
  • Conference Presentations


My current book project, Barriers Down: Freedom of Information and American Power (forthcoming from Columbia University Press), charts the history of freedom of information from its birth in the 1940s United States to the beginnings of the digital age in the 1980s. Following the Second World War, generations of Americans would argue that abundant and varied information promotes democracy and undermines regimes that seek to control what people read, hear, and watch. Yet this approach, aimed at attracting mass global support, has also met with criticism and resistance—from allies as well as enemies. The largely unexplored history of freedom of information suggests both the strengths and the limitations of U.S. global power from 1945 through the 1980s. Barriers Down tells this story, and in doing so exposes the analog antecedents of contemporary debates over digital privacy and digital access.


  • Barriers Down: Freedom of Information and American Power (New York: Columbia University Press, forthcoming).
  • "'The Universal Language of the Future': Decolonization, Development, and the American Embrace of Global English, 1945-1965," Modern Intellectual History (print version forthcoming; published online 18 May 2017,
  • "History of Media and Human Rights" (with Mark Hampton), in Howard Tumber and Silvio Waisbord, eds., Routledge Companion to Media and Human Rights (London and New York: Routledge, 2017).



Conference Presentations

  • "The End of Empires and Some Linguistic Turns." Paper presented at the "Connected Histories, Mirrored Empires: British and French Imperialism from the 17th through the 20th Centuries" Conference, University of Hong Kong, May 2016.
  • "A Prehistory of Media Convergence: Film in Euro-American Freedom of Information Debates, 1944-1948." Public lecture sponsored by the Hong Kong European Studies Association, Hong Kong Baptist University, Oct. 2015.
  • "Broadcasting Satellites, U.S. Global Power, and the Francophone World." Paper presented at the International Association for Media and Communication Research Conference, Montreal, Canada, Jul. 2015.
  • "Technologizing Freedom: U.S. Media Industries and Human Rights, 1943-1950." Paper presented at the Business History Conference, Columbus, Ohio, Mar. 2013.
  • "Towards a Radical Historiography of Human Rights: Modernizing Press and Speech Freedoms in the United States, 1943-1950." Paper presented at the Radical Americas Conference, University College London, Jan. 2013.
  • "'[The] Experiments are of International Significance': Television, Education, and Human Rights in Postwar France." Paper presented at the Warren Susman Conference, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, New Jersey, Mar. 2011.
  • "André Bazin and Cold War Film Festivals, 1946-1953." Paper presented at the "Ouvrir Bazin/Opening Bazin" Conference, Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut, Dec. 2008.
  • "André Bazin et les festivals de cinéma au début de la Guerre froide, 1946-1953." Paper presented at the "Ouvrir Bazin/Opening Bazin" Conference, Université Paris Diderot, Nov. 2008.