Professor Director of PhD Program
I study identity by focusing on the dynamism of conversations and storytelling practices. I examine social interactions as the sites for identity development. I am interested in the ways identities emerge, get tested out, resisted, and amended as part of the social business of managing relationships. My work is situated in Discursive Psychology, straddling critical discursive and conversation analytic methods. For the last several years I have been studying young adult's conversations about romantic and sexual experiences. I am interested in the ways couples pursue intimacy--that is, how potential romantic partners connect and create affiliation in their everyday natural contexts.
On a more personal note, my interest in language and discourse began as long-standing fascination with stories and storytelling practices. Stories (and good story tellers) have an inescapable gravity to them. For some time, I have felt as if particular stories had a way of stalking me. I have been equally healed and haunted by these stories. Isak Dinesen said "to be a person is to have a story to tell." I cannot think of a more astute psychological observation.
Education / Degrees
- BS, Psychology & Philosophy, Wheaton College, 1997
- MA, Developmental Psychology, Clark University, 2002
- PhD, Developmental Psychology, Clark University, 2004