I was born in Los Angeles and raised between the vistas of the Topanga mountains and the landscapes of West Germany. I got my undergraduate degree in History from UC Berkeley. I also completed a year abroad in Bologna (Italy), where I studied Italian history, Women's Studies, and Middle Eastern Studies.
After graduation I lived in Paris and then Rome before beginning a graduate career at Columbia University, where I specialized in Italian, Habsburg, and Balkan studies. I also spent one year researching my first book in Italy (Florence, Venice, Trieste) and three years in Croatia (Zagreb, Zadar). I received my PhD in History with Distinction in 2007, under the tutelage of Victoria de Grazia, Istvan Deak, Volker Berghahn, Mark Mazower, Larry Wolff, and Samuel Moyn.
In 2006-2007 I was a Remarque Fellow and a Visiting Assistant Professor at NYU. In 2007 I joined the history faculty at the University of Miami and received tenure in 2013. For my first and second books I completed years of research in Italy, Croatia, the UK, Germany, and the US. Currently I am an editor for the Purdue University Press book series Central European Studies and until recently I was an Associate Review Editor for the American Historical Review. I was an editor for the Cambridge University Press journal Contemporary European History from 2015-2020 and I now serve on the journal's board. I now also serve on the board of the Botstiber Institute for Austrian-American Studies and also serve on the Journal of Austrian-American History.
My interests in the history of Modern Europe remain consistently focused on moving the spotlight away from the stories we all know, to those we have ignored unwisely.
At the University of Miami, my teaching introduces students to Europe as if it were an unknown world, emphasizing cultural and social dynamics alongside the political histories students so crave. I have recently been promoted to Full as a Professor of Modern European History and currently serve on the General Welfare Committee of my university's Faculty Senate (a job that takes more hours per week than most realize) as well as a member of the university's Tenure Review Board. Within my department, I am a founding member of the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion committee. In the past I have also served as the Director of Undergraduate Studies and a member of the Graduate Studies Committee and the Executive Committee.