University of Colorado
Ivan and Nina Ross Family Fellowship

Research Topic

The Memory of Sabbatianism and American Legal Culture


Nan Goodman is Arts and Sciences Professor of Distinction in English and Jewish Studies at the University of Colorado Boulder. Her research examines questions of belonging and community formation in early American law and literature, and her current work explores the legacy of Sabbatianism in America and its impact on the social, political, and legal invention of Jewish American identity from the colonial period to the present day.

Goodman received her PhD in English and American literature from Harvard and her JD from Stanford Law School. She has been a visiting professor of law and literature at Georgetown Law School and has taught at Boğaziçi University in Istanbul. She has also been a Kingdon Fellow at the Institute for Research in the Humanities at the University of Wisconsin, Madison.

Selected publications

  • The Puritan Cosmopolis: The Law of Nations and the Early American Imagination (Oxford University Press, 2018)
  • Banished: Common Law and the Rhetoric of Social Exclusion (Penn Press, 2012)
  • Shifting the Blame: Literature, Law, and the Theory of Accidents (Princeton University Press, 1998)



Studying law between the eighteenth and twenty-first centuries, an age of transition from a world of empires to the modern age of the nation-state and international law.