Graduate Student Research Showcase
The graduate students in the American Studies program at Purdue produce forward-thinking original scholarship and creative productions that push the boundaries of American Studies as a field, as well as that of the various disciplines with which they engage. This page regularly showcases these young scholars and their current interdisciplinary research.
My research examines the evolution of sexual practices between men by focusing on one location within the urban sexual landscape: gay bathhouses. Although sexual encounters occurred in the so-called "ordinary bathhouses" of the late-nineteeth century, these liaisons posed numerous social and legal risks. By the early twentieth century, however, some establishments began to cater explicitly to men seeking sexual encounters with other men, offering a greater degree of privacy and protection. Taking an interdisciplinary approach, I blend methodological elements from textual analysis, historiography, and ethnography to trace how these establishments developed and how they change physically over time, as well as how those changes related to shifts in the sexual practies taking place within them.