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Mary X. Mitchell

Photo of Mary Mitchell

Assistant Professor

History

mitch279@purdue.edu 

Mary X. Mitchell joins Purdue as an assistant professor in the history department. She earned her PhD in history and sociology of science from the University of Pennsylvania in 2016. Before beginning her doctorate, Mitchell worked in university technology licensing, earned her JD, practiced law, and served as a judicial law clerk to the Honorable Anthony J. Scirica of the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. She is currently an Atkinson Postdoctoral Fellow in Sustainability at Cornell University.

Mitchell is broadly interested in the intersections between law, technology, and science. Her research explores the transnational legal histories of nuclear weapons and energy. She is completing a book manuscript tentatively titled, Test Cases: American Law, Nuclear Weapons, and Extraterritorial Power in the Postwar Pacific. Test Cases uses legal conflict over nuclear weapons testing to trace the contours of America’s Pacific expansion following World War II. Mitchell is concurrently beginning research for a new book about the history of liability, insurance, and compensation frameworks for nuclear reactor incidents.

She has published articles in Environmental History, the Journal of the History of Biology, and Change over Time. Her research has been supported by funders including the William Nelson Cromwell Foundation. Mitchell will be on leave during the 2017-2018 school year.