Charles B. Harris


University of South Florida


Dr. Julia Irwin

Academic Interests:

US Navy History
American Overseas Expansion
Spanish-American and US-Philippine Wars
Gilded Age and Progressive Era Society
Consumer Culture and Publishing
American Foreign Relations
Exhibitions and Simulations


“Surest Guarantee of Peace: Rhetoric, Consumer Culture, and the Popularization of American Naval Power, 1883-1909”

Bio Note:

Charles B. Harris is a Ph.D. candidate at the University of South Florida studying the cultural significance of the United States Navy during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. His dissertation highlights the different ways that Gilded Age naval advocates successfully pitched the idea of modernizing the U.S. Navy to the American people justifying naval construction as societal progress. Publishers and marketers seized on the people’s fascination with naval power, utilizing a willing U.S. Navy, to rekindle a sense of patriotism by sensationalizing militarism. My project reframes Gilded Age naval modernization as not just a military and political goal, but also as an intellectual and cultural pursuit by the American people. In 2020, Charlie received the Phi Alpha Theta John T. Maple Doctoral Scholarship and, in 2019, he was awarded the Harry Newman and Julian Newman Award to support his dissertation research. Charlie was also a visiting scholar at Independence Seaport Museum in Philadelphia in the summer of 2019.

Added May 2020

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