Jennifer L. Foray received her Ph.D. from Columbia University in 2007. Her first book, Visions of Empire in the Nazi-Occupied Netherlands (Cambridge University Press, 2012), explores how the experiences of World War II shaped and transformed Dutch perceptions of their centuries-old empire. Focusing on the work of leading anti-Nazi resisters, Professor Foray demonstrates that the war forced a rethinking of colonial practices and relationships. As Dutch resisters planned for a postwar world bearing little resemblance to that of 1940, they envisioned a wide range of possibilities for their empire and its territories, anticipating a newly harmonious relationship between the Netherlands and its most prized colony in the East Indies. Though most of the underground writers and thinkers discussed in this book ultimately supported the idea of a Dutch commonwealth, this structure would not come to pass in the postwar period. Instead, the Netherlands embarked on a violent decolonization process. Professor Foray's second book, tentatively entitled Imperial Aftershocks: the Legacies of Decolonization in the Netherlands, extends her analysis into the postwar period. It explores the various ways in which the events of decolonization have been experienced, transmitted, and institutionalized in the Netherlands since the loss of the East Indies/Indonesia in 1949.
Professor Foray's work has been published in leading journals, such as the Journal of Contemporary History,The History Teacher, and European History Quarterly (forthcoming, January 2013). She has held research fellowships at both the Remarque Institute of New York University and the John W. Kluge Center at the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C. During the summer of 2012, she will serve as one of the faculty leaders for the National History Center's seventh annual International Seminar on Decolonization.
Professor Foray teaches courses on modern imperialism, decolonization, occupied Europe, and 20th century European history.