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A native of Southern Appalachia, Matthew’s research interests focus on the region’s material culture, particularly its textiles. He hopes to further investigate the intersection and relationship of traditional Appalachian craft production and the emerging industrial production of Colonial Revival textiles using material culture and cultural memory theory. Matthew has interned for the Smithsonian, National Museum of American History from 2017-2018, receiving a Smithsonian Women’s Committee Fellowship to complete his work with the museum’s collection of woven coverlets. He utilizes his own experience as a weaver and spinner to inform his research as well as public and digital humanities methods and technologies to further examine the historic, social, and cultural roles of textiles in Appalachia and America at large. Matthew’s other academic interests include craft, folk art and culture, decorative arts, industrial history, museum studies, and the history of technology. Matthew hopes to use this degree to further his museum career, using that experience to transition into academia.
George Washington University, M.A. Decorative Arts and Design History, 2018; University of Toronto, M.A. Medieval Studies, 2015; University of Tennessee, B.A. History and Renaissance Studies (summa cum laude), 2014
Dr. Zara Anishanslin