POSTDOCTORAL FELLOW IN INTERNATIONAL HUMANITIES (ANTHROPOLOGY)
Aviva Cormier is a Postdoctoral Fellow in International Humanities with the Department of Anthropology, where she teaches courses in Social Bioarchaeology and Biological Anthropology. She earned her M.A. and Ph.D. in Archaeology from Boston University. Her work explores the intricate process of interpreting impairment, disability, and identity from bioarchaeological remains and archaeological contexts. Her current research illuminates the life course experiences of those affected by Rare Disease in the past and the community that supported them. This work contemplates how the bioarchaeological study of ancient Rare Diseases may usefully advance contemporary perspectives on impairment and disability while exploring the complex social and medical experiences of individuals from historical and archaeological contexts. Her recent publications include a chapter in Bioarchaeology of Impairment and Disability: Theoretical, Ethnohistorical, and Methodological Perspectives (Springer, 2017) entitled “Impairment, Disability, and Identity in the Middle Woodland Period: Life at the Juncture of Achondroplasia, Pregnancy, and Infection” in which she presents the possible life experiences, social identities, and community relationships of a pregnant individual from 200CE Illinois who lived into their 30s with a complex skeletal dysplasia and extreme bone infection. Cormier’s work emphasizes the complex challenge for bioarchaeologists to infer the social implications of disability or impairment from archaeological and osteological remains lacking in detailed contextual information.
MELLON POSTDOCTORAL FELLOW (PHILOSOPHY)
David M. Frank is a Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow in Philosophy and the Cogut Institute for the Humanities. His research focuses on values and ethics in environmental sciences. He earned his Ph.D. in Philosophy at the University of Texas in 2012 with a dissertation on philosophy of conservation biology. He has since held postdoctoral positions at New York University, the University of North Carolina, and the University of Tennessee, developing research collaborations with environmental scientists and teaching courses on environmental ethics, research ethics, and philosophy of science. His current research focuses on philosophical controversies about invasive species, the ethics and economics of the Green New Deal, and the ethics of environmental health research.
MELLON GATEWAY POSTDOCTORAL FELLOW (MUSIC)
Enongo Lumumba-Kasongo is a Gateway Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Music and continuing fellow at the Cogut Institute for the Humanities, where she teaches courses in rap songwriting and feminist sound studies. She earned her Ph.D. in Science & Technology Studies from Cornell University in 2019. Her doctoral research explores the politics of community-studios, a term she has developed for fixed and mobile recording studios that prioritize working with artists from “underserved” communities as well as women and non-binary artists with the goal of providing these groups with free and low-cost recording services and education. In addition to her research and pedagogical practice, she also performs original music as a producer and rapper under the moniker Sammus. In 2019 she began working as an audio director at Glow Up Games, an R&D game studio responsible for developing a rap composition video game based on the HBO scripted series Insecure. Drawing on her experience working on the game, her forthcoming research will focus on the challenges of designing rap composition tools that prioritize hip-hop heads and gamers while engaging with broader cultural conversations about problematic yet ubiquitous phenomena like “digital blackface,” “blackfishing,” and the “blaccent” as they are performed and circulated on apps like TikTok and Instagram.
MELLON POSTDOCTORAL FELLOW (AFRICANA STUDIES)
Dadland Maye is a Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Africana Studies and the Cogut Institute for the Humanities. He earned his Ph.D. in English at The Graduate Center, City University of New York. He specializes in Queer Social Justice Movements, Africana Studies, the Caribbean, and Gender and Sexuality Studies. His book manuscript, “The Making of a Queer Caribbean: Grassroots, Dancehall, and Literary Advocacy (1975–2015)” analyzes literature, dancehall music, and grassroots organizations as three significant social justice movements. In utilizing an innovative and trans-disciplinary methodology grounded in ethnography, historical, and discourse analysis, the project provides critical new understandings of the constructions of gender and sexuality in the African Diaspora. He is also working on a book of essays, “Erotic Testimonials, Hallelujah!”, that draws on his erotic experiences in Jamaica and the U.S. as didactic diasporic testimonies. The body of essays highlights that gay sex and sexuality have functioned as productive movements in disabling internalized racism, legacies of religious violence, and cultural homophobia. In conjunction with his writing, he rigorously attends to self-care through exercising, world traveling, and erotic self-awareness. As he sees it, these diverse embodiments of self-love are glory-centered articulations that nurture the urgency of diasporic solidarity and social justice.
POSTDOCTORAL FELLOW IN INTERNATIONAL HUMANITIES (HISTORY)
Cindy Nguyen is a Postdoctoral Fellow in International Humanities in the Department of History and the Cogut Institute for the Humanities. She earned her Ph.D. in History at the University of California, Berkeley (2019). She specializes in the history of Vietnam, Southeast Asia print culture, and libraries. Her book manuscript, “Misreading: The Social Life of Libraries and Colonial Control in Vietnam, 1865–1958” examines the cultural and political history of libraries in Hanoi and Saigon from the French colonial period through to the decolonization of libraries. She examines the institution of the libraries through the lens of cultural imperialism, national legitimacy, and social practices of public reading. She reveals how the library reading room became a space of urban sociability, literary cosmopolitanism, and self-directed education. She considers how ‘builders and users’ (librarians, readers, technicians, administrators) conceptualize libraries, the public, and literacy in 20th-century Vietnam. In 2019–2020, she taught Southeast Asian history courses titled “Contested Histories of Colonial Indochina" and "Print and Power in Thailand, Indonesia, and Vietnam." She developed a teaching module on visual analysis and virtual reality in her Indochina course with the international digital humanities project Virtual Angkor and the Multimedia Lab at Brown. With funding from the Brown Arts Initiative, she is currently working on a poetic documentary film on the language of Vietnamese refugee remembrance and history.
POSTDOCTORAL FELLOW IN INTERNATIONAL HUMANITIES (HISPANIC STUDIES and Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies)
Gustavo Quintero Lozano is a Postdoctoral Fellow in International Humanities with the Department of Hispanic Studies, the Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies, and the Cogut Institute for the Humanities. He teaches courses in Mexican literature and theory, with a focus on border issues. He received his Ph.D. in Romance Studies from Cornell University. His research examines the cultural legacies of revolutionary processes in the Caribbean, Colombia, and Mexico, including its two borders. In his first monograph, he studies how literature and visual culture in Latin America have been a critical tool for insurrectionary movements to delineate possible futures of transnational solidarity and collective action. He argues that the formation of a collective subject depends on the shared perspective of radical futures that profoundly modify the existing tensions of migration and settlement in Latin America.
MELLON POSTDOCTORAL FELLOW (HISTORY OF ART AND ARCHITECTURE AND THE CENTER FOR THE STUDY OF THE EARLY MODERN WORLD)
Jessica Stair is a Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow affiliated with the Department of History of Art and Architecture and the Center for the Study of the Early Modern World, where she teaches courses on the visual culture of colonial Latin America. She earned her Ph.D. from the University of California, Berkeley. Her research focuses on indigenous artistic and scribal practices of colonial Mexico. She is currently working on a book manuscript based on her dissertation, “Indigenous Literacies in the Techialoyan Manuscripts of New Spain,” which considers how indigenous artists and scribes invented new iconographies and modes of reading and writing during the late-colonial period. At a time when alphabetic script had become a dominant mode of conveying information, indigenous communities marshalled pictures in an effort to secure the legitimacy of their communities in the face of restrictive viceregal policies. She argues that the artists of the Techialoyans drew upon 16th-century indigenous scribal practices, artistic traditions from Europe, and the contemporary pictorial climate to invent new communicative forms that relied not only on pictures and alphabetic script, but on the invocation of oral discourses and performative practices. Her other research projects center on the transformation of pictorial forms across genre and media; the authority of images within juridical settings; and the expurgation of images in the early modern Spanish-American World.