Daniel Joslyn

I am a PhD stu­dent in His­to­ry at New York Uni­ver­si­ty.

I care about how peo­ple imbue their lives with mean­ing, how they con­nect with oth­ers and how they seek to change the world around them.

I’m fas­ci­nat­ed with the con­nec­tion between rad­i­cal reli­gious, inter­per­son­al and polit­i­cal prac­tices in the late nine­teenth cen­tu­ry. In the 1880s and 90s, count­less peo­ple in both the Unit­ed States and Europe felt their com­fort­able con­ser­v­a­tive cos­mos to be crum­bling, and turned to new ways of look­ing at reli­gion, sex­u­al­i­ty, and race. Across the Unit­ed States, peo­ple advo­cat­ed hav­ing sex with ghosts, joined neo­pla­ton­ic orders teach­ing them how to live, and looked to Islam­ic mys­tics in their search for ecsta­sy. They saw them­selves as nor­mal, as did many of their con­tem­po­raries. They are my nor­mal. These are my peo­ple.