Professor Bryan Waterman (New York University) will provide an introduction to the conference. Professor Waterman earned his Ph.D. in American Studies from Boston University in 2000 and joined NYU’s faculty the following year. He specializes in eighteenth- and nineteenth-century American literature and the literary history of New York City. He is the author of Republic of Intellect: The Friendly Club of New York City and the Making of American Literature (Hopkins, 2007) and the co-editor, with Cyrus R. K. Patell, of The Cambridge Companion to the Literature of New York City (2010). He has published several articles in such journals as The William and Mary Quarterly, American Literary History, and Early American Literature. Professor Waterman’s current research involves seduction stories and sex scandals in the revolutionary Atlantic World; he is also at work, with Cyrus Patell, on a cultural history of New York City, and together they maintain the weblog A History of New York. He has also written on the band Television and their landmark album, "Marquee Moon."
Marshall Berman is Distinguished Professor of Political Science at the City College of New York and the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. His book All That is Solid Melts Into Air: The Experience of Modernity (New York: Verso, 1983) is considered a landmark study of modern culture and modernity. He is also author of Adventures in Marxism (New York: Verso, 1999); The Politics of Authenticity (Athenaeum: MacMillan Pub Co, 1970 and London: Allan & Unwin, 1972); On the Town: One Hundred Years of Spectacle in Times Square (Verso, 2009) and editor of the collection New York: From Blackout to Bloomberg (Reaktion 2009). He is member of the editorial board of Dissent, and has written on cultural history and criticism in The New York Times, The Village Voice, Dissent, The Nation, and The New Left Review. Professor Berman has also been involved in PBS's History of New York and a History Channel documentary on the history of Times Square.