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Maria A. Kane

ABD History

Email: [[e|makane]]
Current Research: The growth of contemporary evangelicalism in the United States


Research Interests: American Religious History, African American History, History of Adolescence 

Academic Biography: 

  • Ph.D. Candidate, College of William & Mary (2009-present)
  • M.A., College of William & Mary (2008) Thesis: "A World in Miniature: James Butcher and the Transformation of Washington, D.C.'s African American Leisure Culture, 1900-1940"
  • M.Div, Duke University (2006)
  • B.A., summa cum laude, Howard University (2003) Phi Beta Kappa, valedictory honors 

Field Exams: 

  • American Religious History (with Maureen Fitzgerald) 
  • Early American History (with Paul Mapp)
  • Modern US History (with Leisa Meyer) 
  • Modern Latin America (with Betsy Konefal)   


"'Pretty Girls and Fascinating Boys': Gender, Race, Sexuality, & Evangelical Adolescence, 1970-2000" 

Through novels, Bible studies, sermons, interviews, and ethnographic observation, this dissertation chronicles the growth of contemporary evangelicalism in the United States during the late twentieth century. Second, by examining discourses on sexual mores, gender roles, and the family, and how these ideas were transmitted to adolescents, it compares and contrasts the rhetoric, composition, and emphasis of the experiences of white and black evangelical teens. Finally, this project analyzes the extent to which white and black evangelicals relied on secular culture to spread their message. 

Awards, Fellowships and Publications


  • "That Darn Collar" Fidelia's Sisters  August 2011)
  • contributing writer, Peaceful Remembrance: Forty Days of Prayer for Children (GBOD: Nashville, TN, 2011) 


  • Glucksman Fellowship, 2011-2012
  • Provost's Research Grant, 2010, 2011
  • Arts & Sciences Research Grant, 2010
  • Torrey M. Johnson Research Grant, Wheaton College, 2010
  • Colonial Dames of America Fellowship, 2007
  • Lilly Fellowship, 2003-2006