Hilary A. Hallett

Hilary A. Hallett

Research Interest


Ph.D. — CUNY Graduate Center, 2005
B.F.A. — Tisch School of the Arts, NYU, 1990

Interests and Research

Hilary A. Hallett specializes in nineteenth and twentieth century cultural history, both in the U.S. and in transatlantic perspective.   Her research interests focus on the history of popular culture, comparative feminisms, and gender and sexuality.  Her first book, Go West Young Women! The Rise of Early Hollywood, was published by the University of California Press in 2013.  Go West! demonstrates how the transformation of the American film industry into Hollywood influenced the development of Los Angeles and broader ideas about women and sexual modernism.  Her current project, The Syren Within: Elinor Glyn and the Invention of Glamour (under contract with Liveright-Norton), explores the transatlantic networks that supported the success of the English author, Elinor Glyn (1864 – 1943).  With the publication of Three Weeks (1907), Glyn helped to invent the most commercially successful, and critically reviled, genre of twentieth-century English fiction: romance novels with an explicit erotic edge.  Her success as a writer and celebrity author brought her to Hollywood as an “Eminent Author,” where she became one of the industry’s most influential personalities during the 1920s.


  • History of American Popular Culture through Music, 1830-1965
  • Gender History and American Film
  • Hollywood & Modern America
  • Culture and Politics in the Jazz Age
  • U.S. Cultural History, 1890-1945
  • Making the Modern: Bohemia from Paris to Los Angeles
  • Postwars: Cultural Consequences of Modern American Wars


  • Fellowship, NYPL's Cullman Center, 2016-17.
  • Jensen-Miller Prize, best article in women’s and gender history for “Based on a True Story,” Western History Association, 2012
  • Research Grant, Historical Society of Southern California/ Haynes Foundation, 2007
  • Fellow, Center for the Analysis of Culture, Rutgers University, 2004-2005
  • E. P. Thompson Dissertation Fellowship, CUNY Graduate Center, 2002-2003 


  • Organization of American Historian
  • Society of Cinema and Media Studies
  • Western HistoryAssociation
  • Women's Association of Western History



Go West, Young Women! The Rise of Early Hollywood  (University of California Press, 2012).


“Based on a True Story: New Western Women and the Birth of Hollywood,” Pacific Historical Review (May 2012): 177 – 210.

“Women’s Migration, Early Hollywood, and the Making of Los Angeles,” in Actes de l’histoire de l’immigration, Image et representations du genre en migration, Numero special, vol. 7 (2007): 91 – 104.