Faculty & Staff
Ruth A. Miller, PhD
Professor of History, College of Liberal Arts
Areas of Expertise
Professor Miller’s primary area of expertise is the history of gender and sexuality, with particular reference to the Ottoman Empire and West Asia. Her research and teaching interests also include legal theory, the history and theory of computation, and historical methodology.
PhD (Near Eastern Studies) Princeton University
MA (Near Eastern Studies) Princeton University
BA (History, with Mathematics Minor) Mount Holyoke College
Professional Publications & Contributions
- The Biopolitics of Embryos and Alphabets: A Reproductive History of the Nonhuman. New York and Oxford: Oxford University Press, forthcoming.
- Flourishing Thought: Democracy in an Age of Data Hoards. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 2016.
- Snarl: In Defense of Stalled Traffic and Faulty Networks. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 2013.
- Seven Stories of Threatening Speech: Women's Suffrage Meets Machine Code. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 2011; paperback edition expected January 2013.
- Law in Crisis: The Ecstatic Subject of Natural Disaster. Stanford University Press, 2009.
- The Erotics of Corruption: Law, Scandal, and Political Perversion. Albany: SUNY Press, 2008. (Paperback edition, July 2009.)
- The Limits of Bodily Integrity: Abortion, Adultery, and Rape Legislation in Comparative Perspective. Aldershot: Ashgate, 2007.
- Legislating Authority: Sin and Crime in the Ottoman Empire and Turkey. New York: Routledge, 2005. (Turkish edition: Fıkıhtan Faṣizme: Osmanlı’dan Cumhuriyet’e Günah ve Suç. Trans. Hamdi Çilingir. Istanbul: Ufuk Kitapları, 2013.)
- Journal Articles
- “Personal Jurisdiction: An Architectural Problem?” Lewis and Clark Law Review 19 (3) (2015): 791-810.
- "Eradicated Alphabets and Radical Algorithms: Script Reform, Secularism, and Algorithmic Revolution," CTheory (Fall 2013)
- "Nanobots Run Amok, or, The Future of Law and Literature," Law and Literature 24 (3) (Fall 2012): 295-318.
- "Genocidal Rights," Studies in Law, Politics, and Society 48 (Fall 2009): 144-175.
- “Cruel and Uncaring Doctors,” Law and Literature 21 (3) (Fall 2009): 371-386.
- "Rights, Reproduction, Sexuality, and Citizenship in the Ottoman Empire and Turkey,” Signs: Journal of Women in Culture and Society 32 (2) (Winter 2007): 347-375.
- “On Freedom and Feeding Tubes: Reviving Terri Schiavo and Trying Saddam Hussein,” Law and Literature 19 (2) (2007): 161-186.
- "Politicizing Reproduction in Comparative Perspective: Ottoman, Turkish, and French Approaches to Abortion Law," Hawwa: Journal of Women in the Middle East and the Islamic world 5 (1) (2007): 73-89.
- "The Missionary Narrative as Coercive Interrogation: Seduction, Confession, and Self Presentation in women's 'Letters Home," Women's History Review 15 (5) (November 2006): 751-771.
- "Apostates and Bandits: Religious and Secular Interaction in the Administration of Ottoman Criminal Law," Studia Islamica 97 (2003): 155-179.
- "Violence, Corruption and Neo-Imperialism: The Centrality of Islamic Law in the Turkish Political Discourse," Turkish Studies Association Journal 27 (1) (Spring 2003): 53-68.
- "The Ottoman and Islamic Substratum of Turkey's Swiss Civil Code," Journal of Islamic Studies 11 (3) (September 2000): 335-361.
- Book Chapters
- “Biopolitics,” in Lisa Disch and Mary Hawkesworth, eds. Oxford Handbook of Feminist Theory (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2015): 61-78.
- “Turkey,” in Anver M. Emon and Rumee Ahmed, eds. Oxford Handbook of Islamic Law (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2015).
- “The Posthuman,” in Catharine R. Stimpson and Gilbert Herdt, eds. Critical Terms for the Study of Gender (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2014): 320-334.
- “Therapeutic Death,” in Austin Sarat, Karl Shoemaker, eds. Who Deserves to Die?: Constructing the Executable Subject. Amherst: University of Massachusetts Press, 2011.
- “Violence Without Agency,” in Austin Sarat, Carleen R. Basler, and Thomas Dumm, eds. Performances of Violence. Amherst: University of Massachusetts Press, 2011.
- “Religious v. Ethnic Identity in Fourteenth-Century Bithynia: Gregory Palamas and the Case of the Chionai,” International Journal of Turkish Studies 13 (1-2) (2007): 27-42. (Turkish translation: “14. Yüzyılda Bitinya’da Dinî ve Etnik Kimlik: Gregory Palamas ve Chionai Örneği,” Baki Tezcan ve Karl K. Barbir, Osmanlı Dünyasında Kimlik ve Kimlik Oluşumu . İstanbul: İstanbul Bilgi Üniversitesi Yayınları, 2012.)
- “Sin, Scandal, and Disaster: Politics and Crime in Contemporary Turkey,” in John T. Parry, ed. Evil, Law and the State: Perspectives on State Power and Violence. New York and Amsterdam: Rodopi Press, 2006.
Ruth Miller joined the History faculty at UMass Boston in 2003 after receiving a BA in History (with a Mathematics minor) from Mount Holyoke College and a PhD in Near Eastern Studies from Princeton University. In 2009 she also became a faculty affiliate with the Center for Rebuilding Sustainable Communities after Disasters at UMass Boston's McCormack Graduate School of Policy Studies.
Professor Miller's CV