DRAPER GRADUATE DISSERTATION FELLOW
Christina Henderson is a Ph.D. candidate in the English Department at the University of Connecticut. She has published articles in MELUS, Children’s Literature, and the Southern Literary Journal. Christina received a research fellowship from Winterthur Museum and Library. She was also selected as the 2013 AETNA Graduate Teaching Award winner by the University of Connecticut’s English Department.
During her time at the Humanities Institute, Christina will complete her dissertation, “Cities of the Future: Literary Utopias, World’s Fairs, and the Making of American Progressivism,” which remaps the history of literary progressivism by bringing nineteenth-century urban literature into dialogue with international expositions. Throughout her dissertation, she traces a dialogue that emerged between world’s fairs and urban literature that transformed “common sense” ideas about the future. No longer merely a temporal designation, the future began to be imagined as a location — specifically an urban location — that was literally being constructed in the (nineteenth-century) present. In her dissertation, she explores the ways this vision of the future city shaped the goals of Progressive-Era authors and activists, and influenced diverse political and social developments, ranging from the City Beautiful Movement to eugenics to the New Deal. Ms. Henderson’s major advisor is Sharon M. Harris.