I’m an associate professor of political communication at Louisiana State University in the Manship School of Mass Communication and Department of Political Science, where I’m proud to be an award-winning teacher.
I study mass political behavior and democracy with psychology, communication, and history—especially partisanship, ideology, and violence. I’ve written three books and 20+ academic articles in that direction, and that work has been featured in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Guardian, The Atlantic, Vox, Politico, and other popular outlets.
My 1st book, Neither Liberal nor Conservative (2017, w/ Don Kinder), shows the scarcity & contingency of mass ideology in the electorate. My award-winning 2nd book, With Ballots & Bullets (2020), shows the reciprocal links between partisan voting & violence in the American Civil War. My 3rd book, Radical American Partisanship (2022, w/ Lily Mason), investigates violent partisan views today. My next book, American Revolutions, will focus on US democratization–tracing dominating & democratizing factions through history in party platforms & public opinion up to the present, plus present-day surveys of political elites, persuasion tests, & historical mechanisms of change.
Current projects use mixed methods to test effective messaging for pro-democracy candidates, rebalancing local spending in policed communities, & removing Confederate symbols. Other work examines social media conflict over racial justice, threats against women in politics, & many extensions of radical partisanship work. In sum, I investigate fractious roots of public opinion and action as mobilized by communication, with a focus on meaningful democracy.