Jason M.																 Kelly

Jason M. Kelly

Chair, Department of History
Director, IUPUI Arts and Humanities Institute
Professor, British History
Adjunct Professor, Africana Studies Program
Adjunct Professor, American Studies Program
Director, IUPUI-Newcastle Exchange Program
Department: Africana Studies, American Studies, History, IUPUI Arts and Humanities Institute
(317) 274-1689
University Library (UL) 1140



Jason M. Kelly is Director of the IUPUI Arts and Humanities Institute and Professor of History in the Indiana University School of Liberal Arts at IUPUI. He is also an Adjunct Professor of Africana Studies and American Studies. He is a Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries of London and a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society.

Dr. Kelly received his Ph.D. from the University of California, Santa Barbara and is the author of The Society of Dilettanti: Archaeology and Identity in the British Enlightenment (Yale University Press and the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art, 2010), lead editor of Rivers of the Anthropocene (University of California Press, 2017), and co-editor of An Anthropocene Primer (2017).

As Director of the IUPUI Arts and Humanities Institute, Dr. Kelly supports IUPUI’s research mission by directing the IAHI grant programs, identifying and fostering transdisciplinary research collaborations, and organizing research workshops and symposia. Additionally, he facilitates public arts and humanities partnerships, including research projects, performances, lectures, and exhibitions.

Dr. Kelly’s current research projects focus on the histories of the environment, sciences, and art and architecture . He is currently writing A History of the Anthropocene, a deep history of human-nature relations. He leads The Anthropocenes Network, an international, transdisciplinary, collaborative network committed to developing innovative interventions in environmental research, pedagogy, and policy. The Anthropocenes Network is home to several projects including 1) Rivers of the Anthropocene, a research project focused on global freshwater systems and policy; 2) Voices from the Waterways, an oral history project; 3) The Anthropocene Household, a community-based research project that uses the household as a way to understand the lived experiences, knowledges, and practices associated with environmental change; and 4) Museum of the Anthropocene, an experimental platform to develop multi-sited, synchronous, interactive, networked environmental installations. 

Dr. Kelly directs The Cultural Ecologies Project, a research program and PhD track that works with community stakeholders to study and design cultural interventions across multiple scales — from the personal to the neighborhood to the city level. Most recently, he founded The Covid-19 Oral History Project, a rapid-response research collaboration that archives the lived experience of the Covid-19 pandemic.   

Dr. Kelly has received grants from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Wenner-Gren Foundation, Lilly Endowment Inc., and the Clowes Foundation. He is the recipient of the IUPUI Research Trailblazers Award (2013), two IU Trustees Teaching Awards (2011, 2008), and the IU School of Liberal Arts at IUPUI Student Council Outstanding Academic Adviser Award (2010).  



  • PhD University of California, Santa Barbara 2004
  • MA University of California, Santa Barbara 1999
  • BA Pennsylvania State University 1997



Undergraduate Courses: European History, World History, Modern British History, Enlightenment Europe, Eighteenth-Century Britain, Gender in Modern Britain, Comparative British Imperialisms, Scientific Revolutions in Europe, Modern History of Science, Digital History

Graduate Courses: Britain’s Long Eighteenth Century, Gender in Enlightenment Britain, Digital Public History, Historiography and Theory




Kelly, Jason M., and Fiona P. McDonald. An Anthropocene Primer. 2017. http://anthropoceneprimer.org/ 

Kelly, Jason M., Philip Scarpino, Helen Berry, James Syvitski, Michel Meybeck, eds.Rivers of the Anthropocene. Oakland: University of California Press, 2017. 

Kelly, Jason M. The Society of Dilettanti: Archaeology and Identity in the British Enlightenment.  New Haven and London: Yale University Press and Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art, 2010. 

Kelly, Jason M. Looking Up: Observation and Science in the Early Modern Period. Language, Media, and Education Studies, ed. Marcel Danesi and Leonard G. Sbrocchi, no. 24. Ottawa: Legas and the Center for Communication and Information Sciences, 2002. 


Kelly, Jason M. “The Society of Dilettanti and the Study of Greek Antiquity.” The Romance of Ruins: The Search for Ancient Ionia. Ed. Ian Jenkins. London: Sir John Soane Museum, 2021.  

Kelly, Jason M. and John Horan. “Archive as Pedagogy: Oral History and the Journal of the Plague Year.” Collections: A Journal for Museum and Archives Professionals. 2020. 

Kelly, Jason M. “Sir Francis Dashwood: Connoisseur, Collector and Traveller.” Art & the Country House. Ed. Martin Postle. London: Paul Mellon Centre for Art and Architecture, 2020.  

Kelly, Jason M. “The COVID-19 Oral History Project: Some Preliminary Notes from the Field.” Oral History Review. 47, no. 2 (2020): . 

Kelly, Jason M. “Featured Review: Gregg Mitman, Marco Armiero, and Robert S. Emmett, editors. Future Remains: A Cabinet of Curiosities for the Anthropocene. Raj Patel and Jason W. Moore. A History of the World in Seven Cheap Things: A Guide to Capitalism, Nature, and the Future of the Planet.” American Historical Review. 125, no. 3 (2020): 951-55. 

Kelly, Jason M. “The End of Abundance: Water Infrastructure and the Culture of Cornucopianism.” Dilettante Army (Fall 2019). 

Kelly, Jason M., and Fiona P. McDonald. “A Multimodal Approach to the Anthropocene.” American Anthropologist 120, no. 3 (2018): 583–95.  

Kelly, Jason M. “The Warburg Circle in the 1930s.” In Carole Maigné, Audrey Rieber et Céline Trautmann-Waller. “Présentation: La Kulturwissenschaftliche Bibliothek Warburg comme laboratoire.” Revue germanique internationale. 28 (2018) : 5-9. 

Otter, Chris, Alison Bashford, John L. Brooke, Fredrik Albritton Jonsson, and Jason M. Kelly. “Roundtable: The Anthropocene in British History.” Journal of British Studies 57, no. 3 (2018): 568–96.  

Kelly, Jason M. “Reading the Grand Tour at a Distance: Archives and Data Sets in Digital History.” American Historical Review 122.2 (2017): 451-463.  

Kelly, Jason M. “A Classical Education: Naples and the Heart of European Culture.” Seduction and Celebrity: The Spectacular Life of Emma Hamilton, ed. Quintin Colville and Kate Williams. London: National Maritime Museum and Thames and Hudson, 2016. 109-37. 

Kelly, Jason M. “The Reception of Greek Architecture in Eighteenth-Century Britain.” A Companion to Greek Architecture, ed. Margaret Miles. Oxford: Blackwell, 2016. 509-25. 

Kelly, Jason M. “The Anthropocene and Transdisciplinarity.” Journal of Contemporary Archaeology, Forum: Archaeology in the Anthropocene. 1.1 (2014): 91-96. 

Kelly, Jason M. “ Transdisciplinarity, Human-Nature Entanglements, and Transboundary Water Systems in the Anthropocence.” The Global Water System in the Anthropocene: Challenges for Science and Governance, ed. Anik Bhaduri, Janos Bogardi, Jan Leentvaar, and Sina Marx.  Cham, Switzerland: Springer, 2014. 173-82. 

Yeomans, David, Jason M. Kelly, and Frank Salmon and David Yeomans, “James Stuart and the Geometry of Setting Out.” Geometrical Objects: Architecture and the Mathematical Sciences 1400-1800, New Studies in the History and Philosophy of Science and Technology 38, ed. Anthony Gerbino. Cham, Switzerland: Springer, 2014. 281-312. 

Kelly, Jason M. “British and Irish Artists in Rome during the 1730s and 1740s.” Richard Wilson and the Transformation of European Landscape Painting, ed. Martin Postle and Robin Simon. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2014. 35-51.  

Hitchcock, Tim and Jason M. Kelly, “Reinventing the Academic Journal: The ‘Digital Turn,’ Open Access, & Peer Review.” History Workshop Online (22 April 2013).  

Kelly, Jason M. ”Letters from a Young Painter Abroad: James Russel in Rome, 1740-1763 [Introduction and Critical Edition of the James Russel Manuscripts].” Walpole Society 74 (2012): 61-164.  

Kelly, Jason M. ”Howard Zinn and the Struggle for the Microphone: History, Objectivity, and Citizenship.” International Journal of Social Education, special Issue on “The Life and Work of Howard Zinn.” 24.1 (2009 [2012]): 19-26. 

Kelly, Jason M. ”Kennington Common, the Occupy Movement & the Freedom of Assembly.” History Workshop Online (3 November 2011).  

Kelly, Jason M. ”James ‘Athenian’ Stuart’s Portrait of James Dawkins.” The British Art Journal. 8.2 (2007): 24-25. 

Kelly, Jason M. ”The Portraits of Sir James Gray (c. 1708-73).”  The British Art Journal. 8.1 (2007): 15-19. 

Kelly, Jason M. ”Riots, Revelries, and Rumor: Libertinism and Masculine Association in Enlightenment London.” Journal of British Studies. 45.4 (2006): 759–795. 




IU Bicentennial Medal (2021)

Fellow of the Royal Historical Society (2020 to present)

IUPUI Research Trailblazers Award (2013)

Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries of London (2011 to present)

IU Trustees Teaching Award (2008, 2011)

IUPUI School of Liberal Arts, Student Council, Outstanding Academic Adviser Award (2010)


Lilly Endowment, PI, 2020-24

National Endowment for the Humanities, Dialogues on the Experience of War, PI, 2020-22

Efroymson Family Fund, PI, 2020-21

Alan Whitehill Clowes, PI, 2019-21

National Endowment for the Arts, Our Town, PI 2018-20

Lilly Endowment, PI, 2018-20

Indianapolis Foundation (CICF), PI, 2017-18

Wenner-Gren, Conference Grant, co-PI, 2017

Academic Interests

Academic Interests

eighteenth-century Britain, history of archaeology, history of art and architecture, environmental history, Anthropocene, history of science, historiography and theory, contemporary public art, oral history



Centre for Community Based Research, Dublin City University, Advisory Board, 2020 to present

Sustainable Water Future Programme, Future Earth Scientific Steering Committee, 2016 to present

Newcastle University Advisory Board, Anthropocene Research Group, 2016 to present

American Historical Association Digital History Working Group, 2015 to present

Midwest Conference on British Studies President, 2010 to 2012

North American Conference on British Studies Council Member, 2007 to 2015

H-Albion (History of Britain and Ireland on H-NET) List Editor / Advisory Board, 2004 to present