2017-2018 Dissertation Fellows

Maryam Alemzadeh (Sociology)
Institutionalizing A Revolutionary Army: The Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (1979-82)

Victor Gay (Economics)
The Legacy of the Missing Men: World War I, Female Labor, and Social Change in France
What were the effects of the shockingly high World War I death rates on the role of women in European society? Doctoral Fellow Victor Gay will answer this question using a new database that contains the names, places of birth, and dates of birth of all 1.3 million French soldiers who died during the war. Gay will examine how the high military death rate induced many women in France to join the labor force and altered the social norms regarding gender roles for generations to come.

Sana Jaffrey (Political Science)
The Authoritarian Origins of Vigilante Violence and Quotidian Order in Democratic Indonesia
A transition from authoritarian to democratic rule increases political representation, but it also brings with it a number of new challenges. One well-documented challenge that new democracies face is an increase in vigilante violence. Doctoral fellow Sana Jaffrey will explore vigilantism across Indonesia since the fall of Suharto in 1998. Jaffrey hypothesizes that levels of vigilante violence will increase when local elites have access to leftover authoritarian structures, like paramilitaries, that can be used to minimize electoral competition. Jaffrey’s argument will be based on quantitative analyses of statistics from the Indonesian government and qualitative studies of villages.

Zachary Leonard (History)
Abolishing Anomaly: Indian Reformism, 1835-1890
Doctoral Fellow Zachary Leonard will analyze the controversies surrounding British governance in colonial India. With his interdisciplinary study of nineteenth-century social networks and historical documents, Leonard hopes to show that reformist critiques of the East India Company’s monopoly and Britain’s exploitative rule in India produced new visions of universal morality and benign imperialism. These new visions provided a foundation for the further development of popular sovereignty and liberal rights throughout the British Empire. 

Wen Xie (Sociology)
The Making of the Chinese Rustbelt: Work, Welfare, and Industrial Transformation in Northeast China, 1949-2015
Government policies have had a large effect on the economy in China, but how have these policies affected the daily lives and decisions of Chinese citizens? Doctoral Fellow Wen Xie will study how multiple generations in Manchuria have responded to pronounced shifts in economic policy under Communist Party rule. Wen will provide support for her multi-layered account of social change with archival material, memoirs, and life history interviews.