Lauren Duval, American University
Advisory Council Fellow
“Landscapes of Allegiance: Space, Gender, and Military Occupation in the American Revolution”
Lauren’s dissertation examines gender and military occupation in three port cities that changed hands throughout the American Revolution: Newport, Charleston, and Philadelphia. As American men claimed the right of home rule and political independence, the experience of war directly challenged their ability to rule within their own homes. In occupied cities, the state—in the guise of a soldier—invaded the home, producing new and unfamiliar wartime spaces that provided women, servants, and enslaved people with the possibility of seizing new levels of power and autonomy. Examining daily life and contests over space in occupied Charleston, Newport, and Philadelphia, Lauren argues that gender was integral to both the experience of military occupation and understandings of domestic space in revolutionary America. This gendered experience of occupation shaped the ways in which individuals navigated, claimed, and defended both physical and social space, with implications for the relationship between the two, in occupied cities.