Critical Theory Workshop

The Critical Theory Workshop is a student-organized seminar initiated in 2021 under the auspices of the Institute for Critical Theory. The workshop invites junior and mid-level professors, working in areas of interest to our graduate students, to head a one-day workshop. Assistant Professor Nima Bassiri, co-director of the Institute, is the faculty facilitator for this group, and students choose the workshop leaders. At this time, workshops are only open to the faculty and graduate students of the Literature Program and invited departments.  And while faculty are welcome to attend, the sessions are primarily for the students and will remain their initiative and responsibility.

Literature Program workshop participants can contact wweiher@duke.edu in advance of each session for a link to the speaker’s essay.


Spring 2022

The final speaker in this year’s CTW series is Karen Ng, Associate Professor of Philosophy at Vanderbilt University. She will be discussing her forthcoming article “Humanism: A Defense”, in Philosophical Topics 49:1 on Social Visibility. Presentation and discussion will take place Friday April 1, from 4:00-5:30pm (EST) on Duke East Campus, by invitation only.

The second in-person speaker in the CTW series is Ikyo Day, Elizabeth C. Small Associate Professor of English and Chair of Critical Social Thought and Gender Studies at Mount Holyoke College. She will be discussing her draft article “Nuclear Antipolitics and the Queer Art of Logistical Failure”. Presentation and discussion will take place Friday February 25, from 4:00-5:30pm (EST) on Duke East Campus, by invitation only.


Fall 2021

The first in-person speaker in the CTW series is Pooja Rangan, Associate Professor of English in Film and Media Studies, Amherst College and 2020-21 ACLS Frederick Burkhardt Fellow. She will be discussing her draft chapter “Listening in Crip Time” of her in-progress book On Documentary Listening. Presentation and discussion will take place Friday November 5, from 4:00-5:30pm (EST) on Duke East Campus, by invitation only.

The inaugural speaker for the Fall 2021 CTW series is Christopher Chen, Associate Professor, Literature Department, UC Santa Cruz.  He will be discussing a draft article “Remappng the Race/Class Problematic,” co-authored with Wayne State Professor of English Sarika Chandra.  Presentation and discussion will take place Friday September 24, from 4:00-5:30pm (EST) via Zoom, by invitation only.


Spring 2021

The inaugural speaker for the CTW series is Martín Arboleda from the School of Sociology, Universidad Diego Portales in Santiago, Chile.  He will be discussing his essay “Circuits of Rent Extraction”.  Presentation and discussion will take place Friday February 19, from 4:00-5:30pm (EST) via Zoom, by invitation only.

The second speaker of the CTW series is Brian R. Jacobson, Professor of Visual Culture at California Institute of Technology.  He will be discussing a chapter of his book in progress, Art in an Age of Oil.  Presentation and discussion will take place Friday March 12, from 4:00-5:30pm (EST) via Zoom, by invitation only.

The third speaker of the CTW series is Fumi Okiji, Assistant Professor of Rhetoric at University of California, Berkley.  She will be discussing a draft of her essay “Blind spot: Adorno and the (black) folkic”. Presentation and discussion will take place Friday April 2, from 4:00-5:30pm (EDT) via Zoom, by invitation only.

The final speaker of the Spring 2021 CTW series will be Annie J. McClanahan, Associate Professor of English and Director of Graduate Studies at University of California, Irvine.  She will be discussing her forthcoming essay “Microwork, Automation, and the Insecurity of Contemporary Labor”, about Amazon’s Mechanical Turk, conceptual poetry, and the history of automation.  Presentation and discussion will take place Friday April 30, from 4:00-5:30pm (EDT) via Zoom, by invitation only.