Cogut Institute for the Humanities

Collaborative Public Workshop

May 5 – May 6, 2023
Pembroke Hall 305

The 2023 Collaborative Public Workshop featured 12 Brown University doctoral candidates presenting papers developed over the course of the semester in the capstone seminar of the Doctoral Certificate in Collaborative Humanities.

Each session included commentaries from scholars Banu Bargu (University of California, Santa Cruz), William T.S. Mazzarella (University of Chicago), Adi Ophir (Brown University), and Rebecca Schneider (Brown University), as well as a Q&A.

Presented by the Collaborative Humanities Initiatives at the Cogut Institute for the Humanities.


Session 1

Bonnie Jones, “Sensing Memory and Archive Through Sonic Counter-Narratives”
Commentaries: Rebecca Schneider, Banu Bargu

Anna Wright, “The Madness of Angus MacKay: Towards a Reframing of the Rational National Boundary”
Commentaries: Rebecca Schneider, William T.S. Mazzarella

Session 2

Henry Neim Osman, “Biomedia’s Double Logic, or Liberation and Capture on the Organic Circuit”
Commentaries: Rebecca Schneider, Banu Bargu

Ahmad Abu Ahmad, “Domination, (Mis)Translation, and Subversion in Palestinian Literature and Film”
Commentaries: Adi Ophir, Banu Bargu

Session 3

Matthew Kateb Goldman, “Bad Transitivity: Queer Confrontations with Urban Crisis in Angel Ortiz’ Prison Letters to Martin Wong”
Commentaries: Rebecca Schneider, William T.S. Mazzarella

JD Stokely, “Towards a Black Queer Cartography of Boston”
Commentaries: Rebecca Schneider, Banu Bargu

Session 4

Andrés Emil González, “A Visible Hand: Formations of the Present in Contemporary Horror Cinema”
Commentaries: Rebecca Schneider, William T.S. Mazzarella

Fabrizio Ciccone, “The Comedian as Regicide: Frank Capra, Boots Riley, and the Betrayal of Satire”
Commentaries: Adi Ophir, William T.S. Mazzarella

Session 5

Arnav Adhikari, “‘The After of the Already Too Late’: Third World Solidarity, Cinema, and Time”
Commentaries: Adi Ophir, William T.S. Mazzarella

Helene Nguyen, “Temporalities of Tropical Neglect”
Commentaries: Adi Ophir, Banu Bargu

Session 6

Chanelle Dupuis, “Smelling Toxic Environments in Dystopias: De/odorization of Bodies and Spaces”
Commentaries: Adi Ophir, Banu Bargu

Jack Quirk, “Literary Entitlement”
Commentaries: Adi Ophir, William T.S. Mazzarella

Speaker Abstracts and Bios

Creating a dialogue between Ghassān Kanafānī’s ʿĀʾid ʾilā Ḥayfā [Returning to Haifa] (1969), Imīl Ḥabībī’s Al-waqāʾiʿ al-gharība fī ʾikhtifāʾ Saʿīd ʾAbī al-Naḥs al-Mutashāʾil [The Secret Life of Saeed: The Pessoptimist] (1974), and Elia Suleiman’s Al-zaman al-bāqī [The Time That Remains] (2009), this paper addresses questions of narration, (mis)translation, and linguistic infiltration and displacement against the prolonged history and politics of language in Palestine, as well as the consequences of settler colonialism there. I first examine the conditions of contact between Arabic and Hebrew against the advent of Zionism in Palestine: the making of Arabic into a vehicle for suppressing Palestinian national affiliations, its subsequent destabilization and Hebraization/Israelization, the making of Hebrew into a requisite for the survival of Palestinians, and its use by Palestinians to subvert the dominant culture. I then delve into the potential of translating Arabic texts into Hebrew to mediate Palestinian narratives for the Hebrew reading public, and in contrast, the manipulation of texts in translation to neutralize and undermine such narratives and appease readers by maintaining adherence to the national ethos of Zionism/Israel. I finally investigate how the presence of Palestinians in indeterminate/intermediate linguistic spaces allows them to expose their colonial reality in Israel, contest authoritative narratives, and undermine the linguistic dominance of Hebrew as a national language.

Ahmad Abu Ahmad is a third-year Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Comparative Literature, where he works across modern and classical Arabic traditions with a focus on Palestinian literature and film. Having completed a B.A. in English and an LL.B. in law at Tel Aviv University, he has been committed to questions of sovereignty and violence in Israel/Palestine as both a student activist and, later, an attorney. Such involvements inform his current research, which examines the complex politics of linguistic and (inter)cultural contact zones in the project of settler colonial state-building. For him, translation offers not only a rubric for close textual analysis, but an expanded mode of circulation of meaning both within and outside text, where language functions as a contact zone and a site of asymmetric force and violence. (Bio composed by Arnav Adhikari)

This paper reads closely works from the film series “The Young Man Was” (2011–2017) by the artist Naeem Mohaiemen, whose approach to questions of temporality, history, and Third World solidarity gathers around the birth of the Bangladeshi nation in 1971. While the films are often lauded for their fragmentary treatment of archival absences and cultural memory, I argue for a materialist understanding of loss in the series that is made possible by Mohaiemen’s cinematic experiments with time across the works. Looking retrospectively to Left internationalist movements that ultimately failed to materialize their visions in the present, I contend that Mohaiemen’s series is characterized by an aesthetic attunement to the peculiar temporal conditions of the Cold War. Such an aesthetics takes shape across two main axes: in the time of the present, structured neither by mourning the revolutionary past nor the speculative promise of utopian thinking; and through the image, both visible and withdrawn. By offering nonreproductive temporality for its inquiry into the past via the paradoxical logic of successive images, Mohaiemen’s series grapples with the fundamental problem of narrating the dissolution of solidarity in the Cold War.

Arnav Adhikari is a fourth-year Ph.D. candidate in the Department of English and holds a B.A. in literary studies from Middlebury College. Before coming to Brown, he worked as a writer and editor, in addition to conducting curatorial research on image-making practices in South Asia. His current research lies at the intersections of postcolonial theory and visual culture, with a focus on questions of aesthetics, time, and the political history of the Cold War. His writing has appeared in The Atlantic and Postcolonial Text, among other venues. (Bio composed by JD Stokely)

The catastrophic present poses a problem for the satirist. For those who rang comedy’s death knell in 2016, Theodor Adorno’s announcement of the death of satire in Minima Moralia (1951) came about six decades too early. Adorno’s eulogy for satire declares that the conditions that make satire more necessary than ever before have deactivated satire’s abilities to bring about meaningful change. Not only has comedy been betrayed by the present moment, but the pursuit of comedy now feels like a betrayal. This essay considers the persistence of comedy even through its apparent demise. I take Boots Riley’s “Sorry to Bother You” (2018) and Frank Capra’s “Mr. Deeds Goes to Town” (1936) as exemplary moments in cinema’s reckoning with global catastrophe. Made nearly a century apart under parallel historical circumstances, both films, having arrived at that impasse Adorno diagnosed, take up different solutions to the problem of satire’s exhaustion. Capra ultimately betrays the comedic spirit animating his work, turning instead to melodrama as an escape from the critical impasse of satire. Riley bypasses Capra’s melodramatic cure by dethroning satire as the principal genre of comedic critique, leaving behind political despair by finding in satire’s defeat the ground for a new kind of comedy.

Fabrizio Ciccone is a fourth-year Ph.D. candidate in the Department of English. His research focuses on the long 20th century on both sides of the Atlantic, with a special emphasis on the intellectual history of catastrophe and the political utility of comedy. His dissertation work considers artists and thinkers who turn to comedy when responding to the event of catastrophe, finding in the forms and logics of comedy unique modes of critique. (Bio composed by Chanelle Dupuis)

Through a proposed “close-smelling” methodology, this project reads smells in 20th- and 21st-century French and Francophone dystopic texts to examine the ways that the scents of environments, spaces, and bodies are described. Focusing on the novels Sous béton (2011) by Karoline Georges and Les aigles puent (2010) by Lutz Bassmann, this project examines the imaginative, creative, world building of dystopic futures to expand the possibilities of odors and their role in describing toxic atmospheres. From a society that lives in a completely deodorized space under pounds of concrete to a world threatened by deadly chemical weapons of great stench, dystopias provide grounds for thinking about toxic smellscapes and the role that smell plays in denouncing and recognizing shifting environmental odors. Rooted in the field of smell studies, this project attempts to highlight the important role that literature plays in the description of and imagination of odors in society.

Chanelle Dupuis is a third-year Ph.D. candidate in the Department of French and Francophone Studies, focusing on 20th- and 21st-century French and Francophone literature through the lens of smell. Her article “The Smell of Water: A Liquid Witness to Environmental Change in Amazonia,” recently published in Gastronomica, examines how deforestation and environmental destruction of the Amazon has been detected through a process of what she calls, following environmental humanities scholar Rob Nixon, “slow smelling.” She is also the facilitator and founder of the international Smell Studies Graduate Student Working Group, responsible for the blog Smell Studies. (Bio composed by Jack Quirk)

In the early 1990s, the prolific Nuyorican graffiti writer Angel Ortiz (b. 1967) — known by his tags Little Angel, LA Rock, and LA 2 — sent 42 letters from five New York state correctional facilities to his close friend and collaborator, the painter and collector Martin Wong (1946–1999). My paper enters this underinvestigated aesthetic archive of New York’s late-20th-century graffiti scene — after the explosion of graffiti as cultural crisis and its displacement from the city subway. I critically queer the aesthetic strategies and trajectories which minoritarian graffiti cultures took up amid the violent state and market machinations of the late-capitalist U.S. “urban crisis.” Closely reading Ortiz’ response to Wong’s HIV diagnosis in 1994, I contend that Ortiz performs an aesthetic strategy or idiom I call “bad transitivity.” By transit, I mean movement (transport); reciprocity and exchange (transfer); and passage-by (transgression): bad transitivity then names the simultaneous excess and incompleteness, exaggeration and impossibility, of Ortiz’ deployments of these desires from prison. The racialized and sexualized structure of feeling Ortiz manifests, straddling surplus and lack while cathected to another, indexes queerness under urban crisis — not as sexual identity, but as the im/possibilities of minor relationality within and against the graffiti city’s ongoing carceral wake.

Matthew Kateb Goldman is a fourth-year Ph.D. candidate in American studies. He holds a B.A. from Swarthmore College with highest honors in anthropology and sociology and Islamic studies and an M.A. in public humanities from the John Nicholas Brown Center for Public Humanities and Cultural Heritage at Brown University. His research interests join critical cultural theory, particularly queer of color and minoritarian critique, with the study of U.S. urban environments and the politics of knowledge. Working at this intersection, his dissertation reads cultural and aesthetic production across the New York City subway in order to theorize transit as a technique of U.S. metropolitan racial, sexual, and spatial formation. (Bio composed by Helene Nguyen)

In the new millennium, narrative temporalities of hiddenness and revelation that have shaped the conventions and formal practices of horror come into crisis. The political discourse nurtured by reliance on conventional figures and iterated formal strategies is especially thrown into uncertainty as revelations of obscured, ugly truths cease to function as expected. The machine of horror cinematic production persists, however, and in its mix of vocabularies, common sense assumptions, market incentives, and authorial tendencies, a new image is iterated: a disjointed, abominable present that restructures narrative itself, rather than merely being represented differently. In this present, the temporality of revelation is recast as a temporality of unceasing surface, presence and immutability of horror. This project investigates the formal elements of horror film that suggest and constitute this potential shift in one of the genre’s most fundamental logics as they develop over the course of the 21st century, reading James Wong’s “Final Destination,” Jeremy Saulnier’s “Murder Party,” and Ari Aster’s “Hereditary.”

Andrés Emil González is a third-year Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Comparative Literature. He holds a B.A. in comparative literature and politics from Oberlin College and an M.A. in Spanish from the Middlebury College Language Schools. His research focuses on Anglophone and Hispanophone horror film and literature, the production of tropes and narrative conventions, and genre studies. His close readings of popular films like “Final Destination” and “Hereditary” examine how experiments in form organize a logic of horror that undermines capitalist common sense and pushes the boundaries of spectatorship from unexpected angles. (Bio composed by Bonnie Jones)

This paper shares my recent body of sound works that use personal and historical archive and memory as the starting point for musical compositions and sound installations. I was motivated by an interest in how sound and music might intervene into the complicated archival materials and historical narratives of Korean transnational and transracial adoption. I call these interventions “sonic counter-narratives,” and they are interdisciplinary, multimodal forms developed through two sensory strategies: “counter-listening” and “sounding.” Counter-listening is an improvisatory, self-reflexive method that actively listens for erasures and in-between spaces (whether in the archive or any sonic event), confronting how and what we know/hear. Sounding is a gesture of creation — musical, textual, visual, or otherwise. To “sound” the archive brings the past into our sensory present through performance. It is not only the sound of the past, often evoked through historical recordings within the compositions, but also the sensory methods and physical practices of improvising with these sonic materials. It does not necessarily require sound or hearing, instead it proposes that the sensory and perceptual in-betweens and interstitial spaces are generative, divergent spaces of history.

Bonnie Jones is a third-year Ph.D. candidate in the Music and Multimedia Composition program, and she holds an M.F.A. from Bard College. She is a Korean American improvising musician, poet, and performer working with electronic sound and text. A practicing musician since 1999, she has performed in venues across the U.S., Europe, and Asia. She is a founding member of the Transmodern Festival and CHELA Gallery, co-curator of the High Zero Festival, and co-founder of TECHNE, an organization that develops anti-racist, feminist workshops on technology-focused art making, improvisation, and community collaboration. These experiences have informed her project, “Sensing Memory and Archive Through Sonic Counter-Narratives.” (Bio composed by Fabrizio Ciccone)

In March of 2017 the World Health Organization’s (WHO) Strategic and Technical Advisory Group for Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTD) met to vote for the inclusion of four disease profiles to the NTD Department portfolio. One of the diseases up for nomination as Category A, the highest level of priority and thus allotment of resources, was scabies — neither a rare nor new disease. In this paper, I suggest we see this 2017 reappraisal of scabies in the context of two intertwined episodes in global medicine’s index of temporal narratives: the expansion of disease duration through a global lens of “remembering”; and the reorganization of the world through differently abled futures. Thinking with theorists writing against grammars of violence and hierarchies of the human, as well as theorists invested in decolonial histories and anti-colonial frameworks, I offer in this paper a separate path of unlearning global medicine’s temporal narratives. Focused on scabies and the legacy of one human medical experiment exported globally, this paper uses disease and methods of collating medical knowledge to think about the kind of re-visioning that survives through bodies, and its subsequent hallucinations. “Neglect,” as I reflect on in this paper, structures an epistemology that limits worlds as it sets other ones in motion.

Helene Nguyen is a third-year Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Modern Culture and Media, working at the intersection of media, diagnostics, and medicine. Her research explores diagnostics as a mode of mediatic encounter that connects across different conceptions of somatic being and genres of the human. She is particularly invested in the effects and implications of medical knowledge and its archive, as well as its friction with ways of living and being in the world. Trained in architecture, art, and design, she has also participated in a wide range of collaborative projects, exhibitions, and workshops around the world. (Bio composed by Anna Wright)

Victor Grippo’s 1971 installation “Analogía I” consists of 40 potatoes, celled in a grid and linked together by copper wires to make the titular analogy between potatoes and consciousness. Six years later, he remade the piece as an entangled mess of wires and potatoes. In this shift from grid to distributed network, Grippo develops a set of political metaphors, both ecological and computational, for a collective consciousness in the Southern Cone. These two versions are diagrams of power in which life, symbolized by the potato, is captured by the network yet somehow resists it, which I term biomedia’s double logic. I use Grippo’s work to theorize the relationship between bios and techne and ask what happens to life when it is networked. In other words, I turn away from the informationalization of the body and towards the material embodiment of information. By reading this piece alongside Ricardo Piglia’s La ciudad ausente and Pola Oloixarac’s Las constelaciones oscuras, both Argentine speculative fictions, I hone in on the cultural imaginary of biomedia, which I define as both media objects that integrate living substances into computational networks and as the technicity of organic-computational assemblages.

Henry Neim Osman is a third-year Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Modern Culture and Media. He holds a B.A. in comparative literature from Washington University in Saint Louis and an M.A. in contemporary art theory from Goldsmiths, University of London. His research centers on science and technology studies, philosophy of technology, and digital media, and his project investigates the role of speculation in the construction of biomedia imaginaries, particularly as developed in the Southern Cone of Latin America. By putting conceptual art and speculative fiction in conversation, he narrates the production of discourses surrounding biomedia and biocomputing’s access to the real, as well as the murkiness of the boundaries between projects of speculative fiction and speculative science projects carried out in the name of capital accumulation and national defense. (Bio composed by Andrés Emil González)

What do we mean when we say one is entitled? Is it a recognition of a right? Another word for privilege? This paper looks to E.M. Forster’s Howards End (1910) and Virginia Woolf’s To the Lighthouse (1927) to explore what it means to be entitled in law and in literature. In each novel, entitlement functions as both a historical referent and aesthetic organizing principle, revealing a changing sociolegal landscape which manifests as a formal problem of literary representation in early twentieth century Britain. By attending to how a novel builds its social worlds through narrative style, we come to understand the characters’ literary functions — their value to the novelistic world — as based on a system of entitlements. In Forster’s case, narrative irony problematizes whether entitlement to possession and property ownership is the appropriate ground for entitlement to representation. While for Woolf, individual entitlement makes way for collective meaning consisting of a plurality of voices vying for position. Drawing on legal history, analytic philosophy, and literary theory, this paper makes the case for the centrality of material history and literary entitlement to the question of aesthetic meaning.

Jack Quirk is a fourth-year Ph.D. candidate in the Department of English. He holds a B.A. and an LL.B. from the University of Western Australia, a B.A. (Hons) from the University of Melbourne, and an M.A.from Carnegie Mellon University. His research interests center on Anglophone modernist literature, the history of the novel, postcolonial studies, and legal history. (Bio composed by Henry Neim Osman)

What does it mean to be an individual voice reflecting on the creation of a living archive of Black queer histories? What methods and strategies are required to ensure responsible documentation of a community and collective process? This paper weaves autoethnography into a reflection of “Roots & Futures,” a multi-year interdisciplinary arts project in honor of Black queer elders and trans artist-activists in Boston. Conceived and led by UnBound Bodies Collective and rooted in deep care and memory work, this project began with the intent to document the stories of those most vulnerable in our community — Black queer elders and transfeminine folks — so that we may celebrate them while they’re still here. Through photoshoots and “living altars” this project maps Black queer challenges and reimagines Black queer relationships to space, time, and the land itself, while mapping a history of Black queer refusal in the city.

JD Stokely is a third-year Ph.D. candidate in the Theatre Arts and Performance Studies program. They hold an M.A. in advanced theater practice from the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama in the United Kingdom and have several years of experience studying and performing in the United States. Their production experience includes creating, devising, dramaturging, acting, performing, and providing technical expertise. Their work as both a performer and a performance scholar is shaped deeply by their commitment to two collectives, UnBound Bodies and Hot Bits. Across their work, they are dedicated to collaboratively (re)organizing the roots, futures, and possibilities of queer and trans Black life, through questions and modes of collective performance. (Bio composed by Matthew Kateb Goldman)

The union of Scotland with England in the early 18th century was popularized through rational “economic nationalism,” and the recent Scottish national project has been largely focussed on the same. Recent efforts to persuade voters of the benefits of Scottish independence have centered around economic benefit, particularly post-Brexit. The emphasis on economic benefit in Scottish nationalist discourse perhaps obscures that Scottish politics tends towards inclusivity in both practice and legislation as compared to Westminster. Despite this emphasis on rationality in Scottish nationalism, the bagpiping community is inclusive of controversial “irrational” narratives. Among the first scribes of bagpiping history, Angus MacKay (1813–1859) would later be institutionalized for madness in the mid-19th century. MacKay’s reliability has been repeatedly put under the microscope by those wishing to undermine both him and his histories. Yet, more recent discourse reveals a celebration of his life and work that has been invested in madness as a way of knowing, with accounts ranging from a posthumous autobiography to interviews with him over ouija board and other such “irrational” accounts. In this way, the bagpiping community diverges from mainstream “rational” Scottish nationalist discourse and redraws boundaries around what narratives are considered acceptable in, and reflective of, their community.

Anna Wright is a third-year Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Music. She holds master’s degrees in saxophone performance and ethnomusicology from the University of British Columbia. She also plays bagpipes. Her current interests center on practices and traditions of music as they relate to political agency and national belonging. Her project examines the history of bagpiping as a site through which binary constructions of rational/irrational and authentic/fake in national citizenry and narrative are revealed. (Bio composed by Ahmad Abu Ahmad)

Commentator and Moderator Bios

Amanda Anderson is Director of the Cogut Institute for the Humanities and Andrew W. Mellon Professor of English and Humanities. Her research focuses on broad questions of intellectual history, disciplinary formation, and the relations among literature, moral life, and politics. She is the host of the podcast “Meeting Street: Conversations in the Humanities,” and her books include Character: Three Inquiries in Literary Studies (University of Chicago Press, TRIOS series, 2019; with Rita Felski and Toril Moi), Psyche and Ethos: Moral Life After Psychology (Oxford University Press, 2018), Bleak Liberalism (University of Chicago Press, 2016), The Way We Argue Now: A Study in the Cultures of Theory (Princeton University Press, 2006), The Powers of Distance: Cosmopolitanism and the Cultivation of Detachment (Princeton University Press, 2001), and Tainted Souls and Painted Faces: The Rhetoric of Fallenness in Victorian Culture (Cornell University Press, 1993). She is co-editor of George Eliot: A Companion (Wiley-Blackwell, 2013) and Disciplinarity at the Fin de Siècle (Princeton University Press, 2002).

Banu Bargu is Professor of History of Consciousness and Politics at the University of California, Santa Cruz. Her research is situated at the intersection of political and critical theory, anthropology, history of social movements and resistance practices, and Middle East politics. She is the author of Starve and Immolate: The Politics of Human Weapons (Columbia University Press, 2014), which was the recipient of the First Book Award given by the Foundations of Political Theory section of the American Political Science Association and was named an Outstanding Academic Title by Choice magazine. She is the editor of Turkey’s Necropolitical Laboratory: Democracy, Violence, and Resistance (Edinburgh University Press, 2019), co-editor of a special issue of the journal Rethinking Marxism on Louis Althusser (2019), and co-editor of Feminism, Capitalism, and Critique (Palgrave, 2017). Her new book, Disembodiment, is forthcoming from Oxford University Press in 2023.

Shahzad Bashir is Aga Khan Professor of Islamic Humanities and Professor of History and Religious Studies at Brown. He has worked on topics concerned with history and historiography, Persian poetry, the study of Sufism and Shi’ism, messianic movements originating in Islamic contexts, and religious representations of corporeality. His most recent publications include The Market in Poetry in the Persian World (Cambridge University Press, 2021) and the digital book A New Vision for Islamic Pasts and Futures (MIT Press, 2022). He is an associate editor of the journal History and Theory and edits the book series “Islamic Humanities” for University of California Press.

William T.S. Mazzarella is the Neukom Family Professor of Anthropology at the University of Chicago. He writes and teaches on the political anthropology of mass publicity, critical theory, affect and aesthetics, psychoanalysis, ritual and theopolitics, and the occult shadow of the modern. His books include Shoveling Smoke: Advertising and Globalization in Contemporary India (Duke University Press, 2003), Censorium: Cinema and the Open Edge of Mass Publicity (Duke University Press, 2013), The Mana of Mass Society (University of Chicago Press, 2017), and, with Eric Santner and Aaron Schuster, Sovereignty, Inc: Three Inquiries in Politics and Enjoyment (University of Chicago Press, 2020). He is also the coeditor, with Raminder Kaur, of Censorship in South Asia: Cultural Regulation from Sedition to Seduction (Indiana University Press, 2009) and the editor of K.D. Katrak’s Collected Poems (Paperwall Publishing, 2016).

Adi Ophir is Professor Emeritus at Tel Aviv University and the Cohn Institute and is a visiting professor at the Cogut Institute for the Humanities and the Center for Middle East Studies at Brown University. He is a philosopher specializing in political theory and contemporary continental philosophy, with strong interests in intellectual history, Jewish political theology, and Jewish political thinking. He is a founding member of the Political Concepts initiative and director of its iteration at the Cogut Institute. His most recent books are On Ruling Power (Resling, 2022) and In the Beginning Was the State: Divine Violence in the Hebrew Bible (Fordham University Press, 2023).

Rebecca Schneider is Professor of Modern Culture and Media at Brown University. She is the author of The Explicit Body in Performance (Routledge, 1997), Performing Remains: Art and War in Times of Theatrical Reenactment (Routledge, 2011), and Theatre and History (Bloomsbury Publishing, 2014). She has published more than 50 essays in performance, media, and theatre studies, including “Solo Solo Solo” in After Criticism, “Slough Media” in Remain, “Finishing Live” in Representations, and “That the Past May Yet Have Another Future: Gesture in the Times of Hands Up” in Theatre Journal. She is completing a digital book titled Standing Still Moving: Arts of Gesture in Lateral Time and was named a Guggenheim Fellow in 2021 for an ongoing project titled “Shoaling in the Sea of History.” She has been a Mercator Fellow at the Goethe University in Frankfurt and a Distinguished Visiting Professor at Queen Mary University in London.

About the Seminar

The spring 2023 Project Development Workshop (HMAN 2500) was led by Amanda Anderson, Andrew W. Mellon Professor of Humanities and English and Director of the Cogut Institute for the Humanities, and Shahzad Bashir, Aga Khan Professor of Islamic Humanities and Professor of History. Over the course of the semester, students each developed and workshopped a paper while performing a number of collateral academic roles: they nominated and introduced a text to the seminar that was formative for their scholarly development; they served as first questioners for papers workshopped by others; and they interviewed one of their peers and prepared an introduction to their work. By providing training and preparation for roles that are crucial to the practice and fabric of academic life, yet are seldom the object of formal study and reflection, the seminar reimagines the conditions and extends the limits of an interdisciplinary and collaborative research space.


About the Doctoral Certificate

The Doctoral Certificate in Collaborative Humanities promotes cross-disciplinary work oriented toward the most challenging questions facing humanities research today. Collaboration is built through research practices dedicated to thinking together across disciplines and geographical locations. Participants pursue these forms of inquiry through teaching models and student practices that experiment with group presentations, collaborative online discussions, coauthored seminar papers, and other forms of intellectual partnership.