I hold a Ph.D. in American intellectual history (conferred in May 2015) from the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University. My research focuses on articulations of American national identity in early-nineteenth-century New York City print culture, with a particular emphasis on the ways nation-consciousness functioned as a way to define individual identity in the fluid society of a modern commercial city.
My dissertation, “A New York Mirror,” is a study of interconnected circles of literary intellectuals—including the Friendly Club, the Bread and Cheese Lunch, and groups of authors and editors associated with New York periodicals—between 1794 and 1861. It covers publications including the Knickerbocker Magazine, the New York Evening Post (now the New York Post), the Home Journal (now Town & Country), and Freedom’s Journal (the first African-American newspaper). “A New York Mirror” shows that these literary circles took part in a decades-long project of bringing coherence and meaning to urban private life by giving American individuals a place in a national narrative.
I currently live in Scranton, Pennsylvania, where I teach at Marywood University and the University of Scranton. I tweet immoderately as @jnthnwwlsn. For more information about my work or to contact me, please visit www.jwwilson.net.