Emmet von Stackelberg is a PhD candidate in history and Warren and Beatrice Susman Fellow, studying technologies of seeing and the history of industrial capitalism. Working across the fields of science and technology studies, environmental history, and the history of political economy, his research asks how fossil energy-fueled industrial growth came to be seen in the 20th century as inescapable, probing how ideology formation operates alongside the material practices of industrial production. His primary interest is in how moving images come to dominate our visual field across the 20th century—a development that occurred through extractive, industrial, and colonial processes on a global scale. His dissertation is a history of celluloid, the photochemical substance necessary to the mass distribution of moving images until the middle of the 20th century.
At Rutgers, he organized and runs the Marxism & Materialism Working Group at the Center for Cultural Analysis, and has served as a fellow at the Center for Cultural Analysis and the Rutgers Center for Historical Analysis. He is currently a fellow in the Rutgers Center for Historical Analysis seminar, “Repairing the Past.” His research has been supported by the Hagley Museum and Library, the National Science Foundation, the Center for Cultural Analysis at Rutgers, the Rutgers Center for Historical Analysis, and the History Department at Rutgers–New Brunswick. He received his A.B. in History & Literature from Harvard College.