Nofil, Brianna

Field: United States; Advisor: Ngai; Year: 2013

Brianna Nofil is a doctoral candidate in U.S. History. Her research focuses on the politics of policing intra-family crime in the late 20th century, and how it influenced ideas about civil rights, privacy, and criminal justice reform.

Along with Medievalist colleague Jake Purcell, Brianna is currently working on a public history project called Medieval America, which documents the histories of medieval buildings transplanted to the United States by a variety of eccentric American millionaires. She also writes about immigration, women’s history, and the history of the criminal justice system at Atlas Obscura.

Brianna graduated with highest distinction from Duke University, where she majored in History and Public Policy Studies. Her undergraduate thesis project traced the initiation, expansion, and privatization of immigration detention centers throughout the 20th century, and how these centers came to function as sites of extrajudicial authority.

Before coming to Columbia, she held the Bear Fellowship in Business, Law, and Human Rights at the Kenan Institute for Ethics, where she researched transnational corporations and human rights grievance mechanisms. She currently works at the Center for Student Advising on programming to support first-generation undergraduates at Columbia.