Author of Citizens and Rulers of the World: The American Child and the Cartographic Pedagogies of Empire (forthcoming with the University of North Carolina Press), Mahshid Mayar is an assistant professor of American Studies at Bielefeld University, Germany. In her current research, Mahshid interrogates the politics and poetics of silence and silencing in a book project that attends to the political, the historical, and the aesthetic in contemporary US erasure poetry. Her research and teaching interests lie in protest poetry, new empire studies, historical childhood studies, C19 US history, and critical game studies. Mahshid has held fellowships at the University of Georgetown, Washington, D.C., and at Amherst College, Massachusetts.

Spaces and Spatialities of Empire – An Introduction

As the United States expanded, first across the continent, and later, overseas at the beginning of the 20th century—expounding an anti-imperialist rhetoric that rejected European models of colonialism—it nonetheless colonized minds, mines, and markets.[i] And yet, despite currency in contemporary discourses that grapple with the many manifestations of US global… Continue reading

Video Games and American Studies: Weirding the Empire in West of Loathing and Other Digital Games

Stepping beyond the game’s comical and surrealist façade affords a closer look at the ways West of Loathing de-mythologizes and parodies the US West in a subtle, pun-oriented sub-generic rendering of the Wild West, that is, the Weird West.    Continue reading

Book Review: Siblings: Brothers and Sisters in American History by C. Dallett Hemphill

From collective fun to mutual fondness, from emotional and financial support to bitter rivalry, and from abuse to acts of devotion this book is a cohesive narrative on intricacies of siblinghood in a country whose share of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries was one of commotion, change, migration, social unrest, and attempts at self-definition and national coming-of-age. Continue reading