I am a historian of early modern Italy, focusing on religious and popular culture. I am currently an assistant professor of history at Dublin City University, and I hold a Ph.D. from Northwestern University.
My first book, The Bishop’s Burden: Reforming the Catholic Church in Early Modern Italy, explores how attempts to reform the Catholic Church in the wake of the Protestant Reformation were negotiated and enacted in seventeenth-century Italy. Although the Catholic Church charged bishops with implementing significant changes, it failed to provide concrete guidance. This lack of institutional support forced bishops to build their own reform programs, which allowed for creativity as they encountered unique challenges and negotiated changes with parish clergy and communities.
I am currently working on a book-length study of the control of sexual sin and crime by both Church and state in 16th-18th century Venice. In this period, both authorities increased their efforts to control the behavior of ordinary people, as part of projects of confessionalization and statebuilding. Examining trials for sins and crimes including seduction, bigamy, concubinage, sexual violence, and prostitution, allow me to hear the voices and learn about the lives of Venetians, cutting across boundaries of class, gender, age, ethnicity, and religious identity.
EducationPhD, Northwestern University, 2013
MA, Northwestern University, 2008
BA, College of William and Mary, 2007
PublicationsThe Bishop’s Burden: Reforming the Catholic Church in Early Modern Italy (Catholic University of America Press, 2020).
“Schism in the stato da mar: the Bishop of Padua and Missions in South-Eastern Europe” Historični seminar (Historical Seminar), 2021.
“Molding the Model Bishop from Trent to Vatican II,” Church History 88, (2019): 58-86.
“What the People Want: Popular Support for Catholic Reform in the Veneto,” Catholic Historical Review 102 (2016): 65-89.
“Conceptualizing the Priest: Lay and Episcopal Expectations of Clerical Reform in Late 17th-Century Padua,” Archiv für Reformationsgeschichte 104 (2013): 297-320.
“Pastoral Care,” in The Cambridge Companion to the Council of Trent, ed. Nelson Minnich (forthcoming).
“Confraternities and Rural Devotion in the Veneto,” in Rituals of Politics and Culture in Early Modern Europe: Essays in Honour of Edward Muir, eds. Mark Jurdjevic and Rolf Strom-Olsen, 309-336. Toronto: University of Toronto, 2016.
“Extending the Boundaries of the Sacred in Seventeenth-Century Padua,” in The Sacralization of Space and Behavior in the Early Modern World, ed. Jennifer Mara De Silva, 215-232. Burlington, VT: Ashgate, 2015.
“Challenges to Episcopal Authority in Seventeenth-Century Padua,” in Episcopal Reform and Politics in Early Modern Europe, ed. Jennifer Mara DeSilva, 173-193. Kirksville, MO: Truman State University Press, 2012.