Elissa Myers / English

Graduate Student Researcher
Started at the NML: August 2017

Project: DIY Girlhoods in the Long 19th Century: An Exhibit of Objects Made by Girls

Elissa Myers

I am a Ph.D. student in the English program at the CUNY Graduate Center and adjunct at Queens College. My dissertation, Crafting Girlhoods: Relational Agency in the Long 19th Century will examine forms of creative work–in particular, needlework samplers and manuscript and printed periodicals–done by nineteenth-century British, American and colonial girls in the context of education. Because I am interested in excavating the work of ordinary children, rather than just their responses to well-known literary texts, my work is heavily archival. Keeping in mind the rare and geographically-sparse nature of texts produced by children, my goal is also to make these texts more accessible via a digital project to accompany my dissertation. This will take the form of a curated online collection of child-created samplers (needlework objects girls produced to help them learn to sew and read) and periodicals on the platform, Omeka.