Heesoo Cho

Graduate Student in History, McDonnell International Scholars Academy
Status: Post-Qualification
Heesoo Cho

I am a Ph.D. candidate in the history department at Washington University in St. Louis. I study early American perceptions of the Pacific Ocean, focusing on the relationship between the Pacific Ocean and the American West. My dissertation, “The Making of the Mental and Material Map of the Pacific in Early America, 1740-1820,” transforms our understanding of the Pacific as an already-coherent space, whether as a target for exploration and discovery or as an already-familiar terrain for commercial expansion. Instead, it recovers the Pacific as a disjointed space, its contours varying according to the political climate, the needs of commerce, and the material realities of the age of sail. 

I have recently published a short piece related to my dissertation on the Panorama, which is the blog of the Journal of the Early Republic: http://thepanorama.shear.org/2022/05/31/many-americans-many-pacifics/

I have received generous funding from various institutions, including the Peabody Essex Museum, Omohundro Institute, New York Public Library, John Carter Brown Library, Massachusetts Historical Society, and William L. Clements Library at the University of Michigan. 

Prior to joining WashU, I earned a BA in history from Yonsei University (South Korea) and a MA in western history from Seoul National University (South Korea).


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mailing address:

  • Washington University
    One Brookings Drive
    MSC: 1062-107-114
    St. Louis, MO 63130-4899
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