My broader research interest is on the ethics and efficacy of hospitality in the form of humanitarianism and human rights from its historical to contemporary context. To approach this in my dissertation, I examine a case study: the history of the politics of care for indigenous women’s bodies in colonial Cambodia, particularly in the domain of pregnancy and labor, childcare, and prostitution. The narrative involves a network of French imperial administrators and private citizens, European and American international organizations, and indigenous officials and practitioners in Khmer society. This project evolved from my work with an international non-governmental organization on health and hygiene programs for women and their families.
Before beginning at Hopkins, I spent a year in Cambodia as a Fulbright U.S. Student Scholar, working on Kbach Untitled, a project on story and memorials in Khmer society and culture since the genocide. The research was a continuation of a thesis I completed at Westmont College, “The Art of Memory: Visions of Restoration in Khmer Art and Visual Culture since the Genocide, 1979-2009.”
Thesis Title: "Hospitality Engendered: Women’s Bodies, Empire, and Humanitarianism in Cambodia, 1863-1954"
Main Advisor: Professor Shepard