Asaf Almog

Field & Specialties

Early American History (to 1877)
Atlantic History
Early Modern European Intellectual History
American Conservatism


Ph.D., Corcoran Department of History, University of Virginia, in progress; status: ABD

Advisors: Gary W. Gallagher, Elizabeth R. Varon

Examination Fields Passed: American History 1815-1877 (Major Field); Early Modern European Intellectual History (Special Field); Colonial America (Minor Field); 2016.

MA, Corcoran Department of History, University of Virginia, 2015

Master’s thesis: “’Guilty of a Skin not Coloured like Our Own’: Timothy Pickering on Slavery and Race, and the Complicated Legacy of New England High Federalism”

MA, History, Tel Aviv University, 2013

Master’s thesis:  “Between Individualism, Pessimism, and Liberty: Receptions of Thomas Hobbes's State of Nature in Anglo-American Radicalism from Harrington to Hamilton”

BA, History, Tel Aviv University, 2006


Asaf Almog is a doctoral candidate, working with Gary W. Gallagher and Elizabeth R. Varon. Born and raised in Israel, Asaf is interested in the rise of liberal political culture in the Anglo-American world. His M.A. thesis at Tel Aviv University examined Thomas Hobbes’s liberalism and its influence on Revolutionary America. His M.A. thesis at the University of Virginia examined Massachusetts Federalist Timothy Pickering’s views on race and slavery.


Papers Presented:

“Men of their Time: the Founders and Race” (Society for U.S. Intellectual History, annual meeting, October 2017)

“’Mr. Canning and Professor Everett’: Slave Revolts, Slavery, and the Transformation of New England’s Conservative Elite, 1826” (Society for Historians of the Early American Republic, annual meeting, July 2017)

“Timothy Pickering on Race and Slavery: looking for a Conservative National Consensus in the Early Republic” (Colonial Society of Massachusetts, Graduate Student Forum, May 2017)

“Nationalist Ironies in Nineteenth-Century America: Representations of the ‘Disunionist Schemes’ of New England Federalists and the Suppression of Slavery’s Place in the Early Republic” (Nineteenth-Century Studies Association, annual meeting, February 2017)

 “’Guilty of a Skin not Coloured like Our Own’: Timothy Pickering on Slavery and Race, and the Complicated Legacy of New England High Federalism” (Institute for Humane Studies Research Colloquium, October 2015)

“Alexander Hamilton’s Anti-Slavery Position and its Representation in American Historiography” (Us-Them: Israeli Graduate Symposium on American Studies, June 2013)

Book Reviews:

Review of Eric Nelson, The Royalist Revolution: Monarchy and the American Founding, in Michigan War Studies Review (March 2017)

Review of Mark A. Lause, Free Spirits: Spiritualism, Republicanism, and Radicalism in the Civil War Era, in Civil War History (December 2017)

Review of Community Without Consent: New Perspectives on the Stamp Act, edited by Zachary McLeod Hutchins, in H-Net (February 2018)

Current Research

Asaf’s dissertation, titled “Looking Backward in a New Republic: Conservative New Englanders and American Nationalism, 1793-1861,” examines the evolution of political conservatism among New England’s Unitarian elite, and its role in the construction of American nationalism. The dissertation focuses on members of the so-called “Brahmin caste of New England,” a self-conscious elite, all Harvard-affiliated, who maintained an inner “republic of letters” throughout the early republic and the antebellum era. Moving chronologically from the establishment of the Federalist Party to 1861, Asaf juxtaposes the tradition of “conservative reform” against rival traditions, which supported various egalitarian interpretations of the American Revolution’s legacy. The dissertation examines how the converging understandings of conservatism and reform influenced the political culture of New England’s elite and of the American Republic at large. Ultimately, the dissertation illuminates the complexities of the American Revolution’s legacy of liberty and equality before the Civil War.

Awards & Honors

Bernard Marcus Fellow, Institute for Humane Studies, 2014-2015

William McMeekin Fellow, Institute for Humane Studies, 2015-2016

William McMeekin Fellow, Institute for Humane Studies, 2016-2017

Michael & Andrea Leven Fellow, Institute for Humane Studies, 2017-2018

Courses Taught

Independent instructor, University of Virginia:

“American History to 1865” (Summer 2017)

Teaching Assistant, University of Virginia:

“The Rise and Fall of the Slave South” (Spring 2017)

“The Coming of the American Civil War” (Fall 2016)

“The History of the United States from 1865 to the Present” (Spring 2016)

“Genocide” (Fall 2015)

“The American Revolution” (Spring 2015)

“The Colonial Period in American History” (Fall 2014)