BA, Hollins College; MA, University of Georgia; Ph.D., Rutgers University
Dr. Scales is a historian of twentieth-century Europe whose research focuses on the social, cultural, and political history of France. Her first book, Radio and the Politics of Sound in Interwar France, 1921-1939 (Cambridge, 2016, 2018) examined the democratization of radio in France, uncovering how how broadcasting became a new platform for political engagement by transforming the act of listening into an important, if highly contested, practice of citizenship.
In the summer of 2021, Dr. Scales co-directed an NEH Summer Seminar for higher education faculty entitled "Radio and Decolonization: Bringing Sound into Twentieth-Century History" with Professors Andrea Stanton (Univ. of Denver) and Alejandra Bronfman (SUNY-Albany).
With support from the National Endowment for the Humanities, Dr. Scales has begun a new book project entitled Polio and its Afterlives: Epidemic Disease and Disability in Twentieth Century France. Weaving together histories of epidemic disease, public health, and medicine with the social and cultural history of disability, this interdisciplinary book examines how polio transformed France’s welfare state and health care systems, fueled vaccine development and biomedical research, and mediated France’s geopolitical status during an era of decolonization and rising American predominance.
Her research has been supported by a wide range of national and international grants from the Social Science Research Council, the Embassy of France in the United States, the American Philosophical Society, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and the Société des Professeurs Français et Francophones d’Amérique. Dr. Scales regularly presents her research at conferences around the U.S. and in Europe.
At RIT, Dr. Scales teaches courses on twentieth-century Europe, imperialism, the world wars, urban history, the history of travel and tourism, and media history.