I’m a Visiting Assistant Professor at Ursinus College in Collegeville, PA, where I teach journalism and political communication. I’m working on a book about the meaning of merit in America – what American culture and individual Americans say about what people have earned, what they deserve, and whether they got lucky or unlucky. My research interests more broadly include American politics, journalism, and media, and the role of life stories in political discourse, social discourse, and democratic deliberation. I have taught in the Media Studies and Production department at Temple University, in Drexel University’s Center for Public Policy, in Rutgers University’s School of Communication and Information, and at Penn’s Annenberg School for Communication.
Before becoming a pointy-headed academic, I was a journalist with the Philadelphia City Paper and the Philadelphia Daily News, and I wrote a bunch of book reviews for the Washington Monthly.
I live in the Mt. Airy section of Philadelphia with my wife, Chelsea, and our kids Sam, Leo, and Hana. In fall and winter, I run a kids’ basketball clinic at the Germantown Life Enrichment Center.