Michael Blaakman

Michael BlaakmanI am a Ph.D. candidate at Yale, where I study the history of politics, culture, and capitalism in early America. My dissertation, “Speculation Nation: Land and Mania in the Revolutionary American Republic, 1776-1803,” examines the frantic wave of land speculation that swept across the early republic in the quarter-century after U.S. independence; it focuses particularly on the relationships between revolution, financial interests, and state formation. The research for this project has been generously supported by the McNeil Center for Early American Studies, the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History, and the New England Regional Fellowship Consortium, among others. I am also interested in gender history; my microhistorical article—”Martha Bradstreet and the ‘Epithet of Woman‘: A Story of Land, Libel, Litigation, and Legitimating ‘Unwomanly’ Behavior in the Early Republic”—appears in the summer 2015 issue of Early American Studies.

Originally from Rochester, New York, I completed a B.A. in history at William & Mary and an M.A. and M.Phil. at Yale. Between college and graduate school, a Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship brought me to a university in Košice, Slovakia, where I taught English and American Studies.

When not rummaging through monographs and archives, I love teaching about early America, working as a writing advisor at Yale’s Graduate Writing Center, cooking, sailing, choral singing, and taking long drives on historic roads.