Field & Specialties
Early American History (to 1877)
Early Modern European Intellectual History
Asaf Almog studies the development of Anglo-American political, cultural and intellectual history. Asaf works 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. His dissertation, “Looking Backward in a New Republic: Conservative New Englanders and American Nationalism, 1793-1833,” examines the evolution of political conservatism among New England’s Unitarian elite, and its role in the construction of American nationalism. He will defend his dissertation in April 2020.
“Revolutions and Insurrections: The North American Review and Haiti, 1821-1829,” The New England Quarterly, no. 93, vol. 2 (June 2020)
“Nationalist Ironies: The Legacy of the Federalist Party and the Construction of a Unified Republic” in Cultures of Memory in the Nineteenth Century: Consuming Commemoration, edited by Katherine Grenier and Amanda R. Mushal (Palgrave Macmillan). Expected publication: June 2020.
“’The Whigs Generally Are Obliged to be more Covert in their Thwarting Schemes’: The Shadow of the Federalist Party and Democratic Political Culture in Polk's Correspondence,” chapter in progress for a volume edited by Michael David Cohen
“‘It Follows that they are in a Purely Republican Government Born Free’: The Missouri Crisis and the Rapid Transformation of Moderate Antislavery Rhetoric in New England,” Society for U.S. Intellectual History Annual Meeting, New York, New York, November 2019.
“Beyond Federalists and Abolitionists: New England Nationalism, 1815-1848,” Society for Historians of the Early American Republic Annual Meeting, Cambridge, Massachusetts, July 2019.
“’The Whigs Generally Are Obliged to Be More Covert in their Thwarting Schemes’: The Shadow of the Federalist Party and Democratic Political Culture in Polk's Correspondence,” conference on “James K. Polk and his Time: A Conference Final for the Polk Project,” Knoxville, Tennessee, April 2019.
“New England and the Missouri Crisis: The Shifting Boundaries of Compromise,” conference on “A Fire Bell in the Past: The Missouri Crisis at 200,” Columbia, Missouri, February 2019.
“’The Declaration of Independence was… the End of the Revolution’: Natural Rights and Conservative Principles in New England’s Elite,” Society for U.S. Intellectual History Annual Meeting, Chicago, Illinois, November 2018.
“Men of their Time: The Founders and Race,” Society for U.S. Intellectual History Annual Meeting, Dallas, Texas, 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, New Haven, Connecticut, 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, Boston, Massachusetts, 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, Charleston, South Carolina, February 2017.
“Alexander Hamilton’s Anti-Slavery Position and its Representation in American Historiography,” Tel Aviv, Israel, Us-Them: Israeli Graduate Symposium on American Studies, June 2013.
Christopher Childers, The Webster-Hayne Debate: Defining Nationhood in the Early American Republic, in Western Historical Quarterly, Vol. 50, No. 3 (autumn 2019), pp. 315-16
Community Without Consent: New Perspectives on the Stamp Act, edited by Zachary McLeod Hutchins, in H-Net (February 2018)
Mark A. Lause, Free Spirits: Spiritualism, Republicanism, and Radicalism in the Civil War Era, in Civil War History, Vol. 63, No. 4 (December 2017), pp. 431-3
Eric Nelson, The Royalist Revolution: Monarchy and the American Founding, in Michigan War Studies Review (March 2017)
Asaf’s dissertation, “Looking Backward in a New Republic: Conservative New Englanders and American Nationalism, 1793-1833,” 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 the mid-1830s, 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 in the early republic.
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)