Office: Stokes Hall, S312
PhD, University of Pennsylvania, 2012
Fields of Interest
Imperialism, Modern World History, Modern Southeast Asia, Modern Britain, History of Anthropology
Matthew's research focuses on the exchange of imperial knowledge across colonial boundaries in Southeast Asia during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. His book project examines how administrators in British Malaya used amateur ethnological knowledge and policy models from adjacent colonies to inform their imperial educational policies. These educational systems were used in Malaya as part of larger programs of social engineering which the British hoped would help the colony achieve increased economic growth and political stability. His project covers topics such as: Western domestic education for Malay girls, imperial ideas concerning public health and nutrition, linguistic training, and conceptions of "native heritage" in handiworks education. Beyond his book project, his is very interested in imperial travel literature, the exportation of European ideas of domesticity to colonial settings, and popular ethnology in the early 20th century.