Editorial team

U.S. Studies Online is edited and moderated by a group of PhD and Early Career Researchers based in the UK.

The editorial team for 2022-23 includes Sam Thozer, Molly Becker, Tom Cryer and Aija Oksman, and is led by co-editors Robyn Shooter and Frances Rowbottom.

Robyn Shooter (King’s College London) – Co-Editor

Robyn Shooter is an English and Music PhD candidate at King’s College London, examining genre, gender representation, and community formation in Americana music (1960 to Present). She has also previously authored and co-authored several original articles, including: an examination of aura and authenticity in the sites of the Grand Ole Opry; a comparative study of the pastoral and female autonomy in the music of Julie Candeille and Taylor Swift; and an exploration of the role of sentimentality and regional identity in the works of Dolly Parton and June Carter Cash (1970-1975).

Frances Rowbottom (University of Edinburgh) – Co-Editor

Frances Rowbottom is a final-year PhD researcher at the University of Edinburgh. Her research is based primarily on the American South, and William Faulkner’s uses of myth and legend.
Frances is currently examining the legacies of history and public memory in literature after the Civil War, with a focus on the creation and implementation of the myth of the Lost Cause and coinciding racial politics in a post-war society, reaching into the twentieth- and twenty-first centuries.

Tom Cryer (University College London) – Events Editor

Tom Cryer is a AHRC-funded PhD Candidate in American History at University College London, where his research uses the life, scholarship, and advocacy of the historian John Hope Franklin as a lens on memory, race, and nationhood within the twentieth-century United States. Prior to arriving at UCL, he received a BA(Hons) in History and an MPhil in U.S. History from the University of Cambridge. He is more broadly interested in the discursive violence wielded by historical scholarship and history’s function for policymakers, having participated in conferences at the Ditchley Foundation and the Salzburg Global Seminar.

Aija Oksman (University of Edinburgh) – Book Reviews Editor

After an MLitt in Publishing (University of Stirling) and MSc (University of Edinburgh) on radical self-representation of Sojourner Truth and Frederick Douglass, Aija is now a PhD candidate at the University of Edinburgh. Her current research focuses on African American women writer’s literary and counterliterary experience with the FBI. Her research interests are interdisciplinary and intersectional with a focus on women’s and other marginalised groups’ literary, cultural and socio-economical interactions and counteractions. Recently, Aija has also been tutoring undergraduates on Literary Studies at University of Edinburgh.

Sam Thozer (University of Manchester) – Co-Communications and Outreach Editor

Samson Thozer is a first-year PhD student in American Studies at the University of Manchester. His research is on the formation and expression of New Negro identity in interwar Detroit. He has a BA in English Literature and American Studies, and an MA in English, both from the University of Manchester. Between 2017 and 2021, he lived in the USA, teaching at Pennsylvania Highlands Community College and working with kids at the YMCA. He wrote a book called Halfway to Everywhere: Two Years’ Tarry in Clearfield, PA, self-published in 2021.

Molly Becker (University of Cambridge) – Co-Communications and Outreach Editor

Molly Becker recently completed her PhD in twentieth-century Midwestern American fiction at the University of Cambridge. Since September, she has held the role of the Alumni Communications Officer at Christ’s College, Cambridge.

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