John Boonstra received his PhD from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in August 2018. Overall, his research asks how unique sites of colonial contact shaped ideologies of gender and empire.
His dissertation, ‘A Mandate to Protect: Imperial Encounters and Affective Ideologies Between France and Lebanon, 1860-1931,’ examines the formation of an imperial relationship between France and Lebanon in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, investigating how a range of encounters between writers and travelers, industrialists and workers, activists and administrators, and everyday French and Lebanese men and women informed the transition from informal protectorate to formal colonial regime.
During his Max Weber Fellowship, he plans to submit a chapter from his dissertation for publication, targeting either the International Journal for Middle East Studies or the Journal of Middle East Women’s Studies, while continuing to revise the dissertation into a manuscript, tentatively titled ‘Finding France in the Levant: Lebanon in the French Imperial Imagination.’
John has experience teaching modern European history at introductory and intermediate levels, women’s and gender history at the advanced level, and modern Mediterranean history at an intermediate level. He also has experience conducting research in over two-dozen archives and libraries in France, Lebanon, Austria, and the United States.