Academic Research

I hold an M.Phil in International Relations from Oxford (2017) and a B.A. Phi Beta Kappa with Highest Honors in Political Science, English Literature, and Philosophy from Swarthmore College (2013). I have been fortunate to be supported in my academic research by the Clarendon Scholarship, Pembroke College Research Grant, Leedom Fellowship for Academic Excellence, and J. Roland Pennock Fellowship. In 2016 I was a finalist for the University of Oxford’s All Souls Exam, widely considered the most rigorous written exam in English-speaking academia.

"Why Inequality Doesn't Threaten the CCP: A Rawlsian Take on Chinese Inequality"

Journal of International Studies, University of Madison-Wisconsin (2014)

Commentators frequently warn that economic inequality threatens the staying power of the Chinese Community Party. Yet when the CCP named the “seven perils” it considers most dangerous to social stability earlier this year, economic inequality was not one. How can we explain the disconnect between the view of commentators, and CCP leaders?

Full Paper at The Journal of International Undergraduate Studies (pg. 51-57).



“The Responsibility to Protect: State of Play”

The International Spectator (2016)

The thesis I researched for the M.Phil in International Relations at Oxford focuses on citizen resistance to genocide. At the suggestion of Professor Kalypso Nicolaidis, Director of Oxford's Center for International Studies, we rewrote my thesis as a play. In this theatrical-academic experiment, Marx and Freud argue about human nature, Judith Butler lectures Aristotle on gender norms, and a cohort of extraordinary political philosophers try to bring their insights to bear on one of the outstanding moral questions of 21st century politics: how to stop genocide. Read the full text of the play in the The International Spectactor. Read my M.Phil thesis on which the play is based here. Read a short article about citizen resistance to genocide, the inspiration for my thesis, here.

"Toward a Global Leviathan? International Business, China's Student Elite, and the Future of Sino-American Relations"

Hemisphere: The Tufts Journal of International Affairs (2013)

Liberals believe that economic integration will facilitate closer US-Chinese relations, while realists see hegemonic conflict as inevitable. But what effect is increased western employment opportunities actually having on China's current generation of student elites?

Full article at Tufts University Journal of International Affairs, pg. 23-38

“Rightward Turn: Racial Resentment and the Death of the American Liberal Consensus, 1968-2011”

Senior Thesis, Swarthmore College Department of Political Science, 2013

What explains the end of the American ‘liberal consensus,’ usually defined by FDR’s New Deal through LBJ’s Great Society? Using interviews, internal campaign communications, speeches, journalistic accounts and public polls, this thesis explores the Republican Party’s ‘Southern Strategy’ and argues that the GOP’s mobilization of racial resentment against Democrats’ commitment to civil rights and the expansion of the social safety net to include African-Americans is the primary reason for the rightward turn beginning in the late 1960s. Completed three and a half years before Trump’s election, this thesis argues that racial resentment remains at the heart of modern Republican politics. Read a brief op-ed that explains the premise of the thesis and read the full thesis here.

"China's Rise in Historic Context: Challenges to Peaceful Integration", (2012)

Realists often argue that China's rapid economic growth and surge in political prowess point to inevitable hegemonic conflict with the United States. But China's rise differs significantly from the Euro-centric frameworks of Great Power conflict. Distinguishing China's rise from those cases, this paper argues that the only serious threat to Sino-American peace is the reciprocal potential for short-sighted defensiveness.

Full article at