Affiliated Postdoctoral Fellows & Visiting Scholars 

The Center welcomes the following post-doctoral and visiting scholars from other programs as affiliates of the CSGS. Students should view the schedule for more information on their courses crosslisted with GNSE and those they may teach in the Core.  Postdoctoral fellows are also eligible to advise B.A. and M.A. theses.

Post-doctoral scholars are listed alphabetically by school/division - Divinity, Humanities, and Social Sciences.

Divinity School

Maureen KellyMaureen Kelly

Teaching Fellow at the Divinity School and in the College, Divinity School
Ph.D., Religion Literature and Visual Culture, University of Chicago

Maureen Kelly works on the connected questions of power, truth, and subjectivity in the study of Religion, with a focus on the role of Christianity in the genealogy of the modern subject. This work attends to the relationship between the formation of concepts and the formation of subjects, raising topics of gender and sexuality through the lens of power. Her current work re-reads the Confessions of Rousseau and Augustine through a Foucauldian critique of confession, exploring the Foucauldian notion of truth-games, the relationship between public rituals of truth-telling and their political and ethical effects, and the affective histories of their rhetorical forms. In teaching this year, her courses address the sexual ethics of early Christianity delineated from Greco-Roman sexual ethics in the final volumes of Foucault’s History of Sexuality (Foucault and the Christians), and the modes though which writing establishes authority in early modern and Enlightenment founding texts of self-government (Religion, Writing, Revolution).



Thaomi Michelle Dinhdinh

American Council of Learned Societies Emerging Voices Fellow, English Language and Literature
Ph.D., English, University of Washington

My research is concerned with questions around care and violence. I am currently writing a set of articles from my dissertation: one on motherhood and storytelling, and the other on Asian American abolition. Calling attention to the ongoing violence on refugee and immigrant lives, each article theorizes care as a way of linking individual trauma to a larger community, giving us a path to retrieve history. I am building upon my work on care and storytelling in my book project on everyday sexual violence and wartime violence in Asian America. Focused on intersections of racialized, gendered, and sexualized violence, this project considers the socialization of rape culture in Asian American lives. As an instructor, I use cultural, gender, and ethnic studies to create meaningful connections between students and their communities. I am excited about teaching and mentorship, especially for first-generation students of color like myself.

Emily DupreeEmily Dupree

Humanities Teaching Fellow, Philosophy
Ph.D., Philosophy, University of Chicago

Emily Dupree received her PhD from the University of Chicago and her JD from the University of Chicago Law School. She works at the intersection of moral and political philosophy, feminist philosophy, and moral psychology. Her research interests include the social nature of moral personhood, the rationality of revenge under conditions of oppression, the metaphysics of gender, and gender abolition. She is currently working on a manuscript on the contingency of moral personhood as exemplified in Barbara Loden's 1970 film, Wanda.

Desiree Foerster

Postdoctoral Fellow, Instructor, Cinema and Media Studies
Ph.D., Media Ecologies, University Potsdam, Germany
Desiree Foerster is a Post-Doc at the Department for Cinema and Media Studies, University of Chicago. She graduated from the Institute for Arts and Media, University of Potsdam with her PhD-thesis “Aesthetic Experience of Metabolic Processes”. Taking on the perspective of process philosophy and media-aesthetics, she investigates the impacts of pre-reflective experiences on human subjectivity. For further information please visit:

Caroline Heller

Teaching Fellow, English Language and Literature
Ph.D., English Language and Literature, University of Chicago

My research focuses on connecting non-canonical texts by women and minority writers of the eighteenth century and early Romantic period with our contemporary moment concerning climate change and feminism. I am also particularly interested in feminisms of the 1790s and care feminism of the late twentieth-century/early twenty-first century.

Steven MayeSteven Maye

Humanities Teaching Fellow, English Language and Literature
Ph.D., English Language and Literature, University of Chicago

I teach and research in the areas of media studies, gender and sexuality studies, and 20th- and 21st-century North American literatures, especially poetry. My current book project, Lyric Formats, examines how queer poets, women poets, and poets of color have converted the deficiencies of lyric poetry, as a means of representation, into assets for reimagining the media publics in which they and their readers are embedded. My other current project concerns the “episode” as both a genre of contemporary narrative and a genre for life. Here, I show how scripted television programs of the past four decades have used the powers of abstraction, idealization, and selective memory that adhere in sexuality to renegotiate the marriage plot, making narratives of love and sex available for endless deferral while opening them up to more capacious inhabitation.

Helina Mazza-HilwayHelina Mazza-Hilway

Teaching Fellow, Master of Arts Program in the Humanities
Ph.D., East Asian Languages and Civilizations, University of Chicago

Helina Mazza-Hilway's research focuses on modern Japanese literature and culture, particularly as it intersects with issues of gender, 'deviance', and self-expression. Her current book project, Writ(h)ing Subjecthood: Toward a Feminine Grotesque in Modern Japanese Literature, examines modern subjectivity in the works of three early twentieth-century women writers, and illustrates their approaches to writing a ‘feminine grotesque’--as generative as it was abject and aberrant-- within the ongoing negotiations of their emergent subjecthood. Other research interests include trauma & resilience, non-human selfhood, genre fiction & minor literatures, and theories of readership.

Or Porath

Postdoctoral Researcher and Instructor, East Asian Languages and Civilizations
Ph.D., Buddhist Studies, UC Santa Barbara

Dr. Or Porath specializes in the religions of Japan, specifically the influential school of Tendai Buddhism, its doctrines and practices, and the intersection between the Buddhist worldviews and issues of gender and sexuality. His current book project, The Flower of Dharma Nature: Sexual Consecration and Amalgamation in Medieval Japanese Buddhism, examines the chigo kanjō, an institutionalized male-male sexual initiation that was doctrinally sanctioned in orthodox Buddhist teachings. Dr. Porath investigates in his work how sexual acts were sanctified and grounded in Tendai doctrinal concepts, and the manner in which they shed light on the Buddhist assimilation of local forms of worship including Shinto.

Elizabeth Tavella

Humanities Teaching Fellow, Romance Languages and Literatures
Ph.D., Romance Languages and Literatures, University of Chicago

Elizabeth Tavella’s research interests focus on comparative studies of literature and critical animal studies, and more broadly on the environmental humanities within intersectional frameworks that draw on queer ecologies, decolonial approaches, and critical theory. Elizabeth is currently finalizing two articles that engage with the emerging field of transecology: the first on reproductive justice and bodily autonomy across species examined through a variety of sources ranging from medical treatises and legislation to literary texts; the second on nonhuman animals, from octopuses to platypuses, who defy classification and challenge the very foundation of category-based epistemology. A new project emerging alongside this research investigates speculative fiction, centered on Indigenous, Black, queer, and trans futurities which aims to explore the intersection between multispecies studies, social justice, and political ecology.

Jacqueline Victor

Humanities Teaching Fellow, Romance Languages and Literatures
Ph.D., Romance Languages and Literatures, University of Chicago

I study medieval (primarily Old French) romance narratives that feature adventuring female protagonists. The medieval romance genre - which gave us the enduring figures of the knight and the lady - has often been understood and defined through the figure of the wandering knight. I show, however, that models for female adventure are in fact numerous in medieval literature, and that they served as sites for the interrogation and transformation of the knightly model. I am thus most interested in gender in the Middle Ages, as well as the relationship of gender to protagonism, adventure, and narrative subjectivity. Similarly, I am interested in the depiction of gender (and gender transgressions) in Saints' Lives, and how this intersects with the figure of the female protagonist in more secular genres such as romance.


Social Sciences

Jordan Bimm

Postdoctoral Researcher at the Rank of Instructor, Stevanovich Institute on the Formation of Knowledge
Ph.D., Science & Technology Studies (STS), York University

Jordan Bimm is a historian of science, technology, and medicine, focused on the human and biological problems of spaceflight. His work on the early history of aerospace medicine in the Cold War investigates how women, LGBTQ people, and racial minorities were excluded from America's astronaut corps through the medicalized construction of an ideal spacefaring body assumed to be white, straight, and male. His research tracks the nearly-forgotten stories of non-white, non-male space medicine test-subjects used to furnish biomedical data to scientists, and also the mis-gendering of celebrity space animals popularized in media. He has been a NASA History Fellow, and currently holds a Guggenheim Fellowship at the National Air and Space Museum. Most recently, he was a SSRHC Postdoctoral Fellow at Princeton University.

Jennifer Caputo

Postdoctoral Scholar in the Department of Sociology and the Center for Health and the Social Sciences
Ph.D., Sociology, Indiana University

My research examines how social structures and statuses including family, gender, and race/ethnicity shape cognitive, mental, and physical health as adults age. My current National Institute on Aging-funded work uses panel data to assess how characteristics of relationships between older parents and their adult children, such as the frequency of interactions and sharing a household, affect older adults’ cognitive functioning trajectories. Other ongoing projects explore racial and ethnic differences in the predictors and mental health implications of coresidence with adult children, assess burden and support needs among caregivers of hospitalized older adults, and develop approaches to improve older adults' research study recruitment rates. Before joining the University of Chicago, I worked on an interdisciplinary research team investigating gender gaps in health and survival at the Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research in Germany.

Maliha Chishti

Lecturer, Harris School of Public Policy
Ph.D., OISE, University of Toronto

Maliha Chishti is a postcolonial feminist researcher and aid practitioner in the field of gender and post-conflict peacebuilding. As the former Director of the Hague Appeal for Peace at the United Nations, Maliha helped initiate the historic Security Council Resolution 1325 on Women, Peace and Security. Her publications and research areas include gender, the war on terror and peacebuilding in Muslim-majority contexts. She teaches Introduction to Peacebuilding, Women, Development and Politics and Women, Peace and Security.

Iris Clever

Postdoctoral Researcher at the Rank of Instructor, Stevanovich Institute on the Formation of Knowledge
Ph.D., History, University of California, Los Angeles

I am a historian of science, technology, and the body. Much of my work is concerned with the quantification of bodies, the human experience of measurement practices, and the role bodies and technologies play in defining the relationship between objectivity and subjectivity in science. My current work contributes to a deeper understanding of the precarious nature of classifications of bodies. It aims to show why classifications that seem “natural” reproduce biased assumptions about race and sex. With concrete historical case studies and insights from critical gender, race, and science studies, I make visible how scientists worked to transcend classifications from the human context of knowledge production.

Tori Gross

Earl S. Johnson Instructor in Anthropology, Master of Arts Program in the Social Sciences
Ph.D., Anthropology, Columbia University

Tori Gross is Earl S. Johnson Instructor in Anthropology at the Master of Arts Program in the Social Sciences. She holds a PhD in Anthropology from Columbia University and her research interests include the politics of affect and emotion, gendered performances of status, and negotiations of parastate sovereignty in the context of India’s young democracy. Tori's first book manuscript examines the relationships between populist reason, anxious articulations of masculinity, and competitive intercaste violence in contemporary South India. She teaches courses on power and resistance, status and performance, and processes of collective self making.

Amy Krauss

Postdoctoral Instructor, Pozen Family Center for Human Rights
Ph.D., Anthropology, Johns Hopkins University

Amy Krauss’s research interests include feminist, queer, and critical race theory, ethnography, and histories of the body in law and medicine. Her current book project examines feminist practices of care and solidarity across rivaling state jurisdictions of abortion rights and criminalization in Mexico.  She teaches courses on human rights and reproductive justice movements in Latin America and the U.S., and on the politics of representation in ethnographic and literary depictions of social suffering.

Allie Locking

Harper-Schmidt Collegiate Fellow, History
Ph.D., Medieval European History, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Allie Locking is a historian of medieval Europe, focusing on the eleventh and twelfth centuries. Her research interests include examining how medieval conceptions of gender and gender roles shaped ideas about the practice and performance of secular lordship and religious reform. She teaches all three courses in the History of European Civilization Core each year as part of her postdoctoral position.

Deirdre Lyons

Post-Doctoral Teaching Fellow in the Social Sciences, Critical Race and Ethnic Studies
Ph.D., History, University of Chicago

Dr. Lyons is a historian working on slavery and its afterlives in the Caribbean. Specializing in the French Antilles, her work examines how gender, race, and family shaped slavery, abolition, and emancipation over the course of the nineteenth century. Drawing on two years of archival research in France, Martinique, and Guadeloupe, her current book project analyzes slavery and abolition in the French Antilles. It argues that enslaved and freed persons, colonial authorities, slaveholders, and abolitionists perceived, experienced, and contested the transition from slavery to freedom through a multivalent concept she calls family politics. Referring to discourses about, policies regarding, and practices of, intimacy, love, and power within networks of kinship, co-residence, and marriage, family politics emphasizes the ways in which formerly enslaved persons, abolitionists, and colonial elites perceived the family as the site on which political power and social order should be constructed in the absence of slavery. This framework invites several new considerations of the history of slavery and its afterlives in the Caribbean more broadly and the French Antilles in particular. Dr. Lyons received her PhD in History from the University of Chicago, where she continues to teach courses that familiarize students with critical race and gender studies, the history of colonization and decolonization in the Atlantic world, slavery and its afterlives in the Americas, and social theory. She is currently working on her manuscript and preparing an article on enslaved women’s freedom suits in early-nineteenth-century Martinique and Guadeloupe.

Naama Maor

Teaching Fellow in the Social Sciences, History
Ph.D., History, University of Chicago

Naama Maor specializes in the legal and social history of the United States. Her work examines the relationship between social policy and criminal justice reform, uncovering the interconnected origins of the welfare state and the carceral state. Maor explores how ideas about gender, sexuality, race, and class shaped public regulation of family life. As a teaching fellow, Maor teaches courses on the carceral state, childhood, and human rights. Prior to pursuing a Ph.D., Maor was a broadcast news journalist and spent a year working at a reformatory for boys.

Erin McCullughErin McCullugh

Teaching Fellow in the Social Sciences, History
Ph.D., University of Chicago

Erin McCullugh is a Teaching Fellow in the Social Sciences whose research focuses on slavery, gender, and sexuality in Latin America and the broader Atlantic World. Her current book manuscript, The Libidinous Commerce: Race, Sexuality, and Slavery in Rio de Janeiro, 1850-1888, examines the intersection of gender, intimate labor, and slavery in nineteenth-century Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The book analyzes judicial cases, police correspondence, medical literature, and sale ads to illustrate how the institution of slavery helped facilitate a spectrum of intimate labor performed under force and coercion (including concubinage, wet nursing, and prostitution). Erin’s research is the culmination of a long exploration of the lives of African and Afro-descended women in the Americas. These themes are also reflected in her teaching interests that include the history of gender and sexuality in Brazil; gender and the African Diaspora in the Americas; and the history of prostitution and intimate labor.

Karen OkigboKaren Okigbo

Postdoctoral Researcher, Harris School of Public Policy
Ph.D., Sociology, CUNY Graduate Center

Karen Okigbo is a Postdoctoral Researcher at the Harris School of Public Policy. Broadly speaking, her research is on the areas of immigration, race, ethnicity, and family. Her recent work focuses on intermarriage and endogamy among second-generation Nigerian-Americans and explores their marital decision-making processes. Her research also speaks to the gendered expectations and experiences of Black immigrants when selecting a marital partner. Karen received her PhD in Sociology from the CUNY Graduate Center. She also holds Masters degrees in Social Policy from the University of Pennsylvania and Sociology from North Dakota State University, and a Bachelor's in Politics from Princeton University.

Meital PintoMeital Pinto

Visiting Scholar, Center for Middle Eastern Studies
Ph.D., Law, University of Toronto

Meital Pinto is a senior lecturer at the Zefat Academic College, School of Law and the Ono Academic College, Faculty of Law in Israel. Dr. Pinto has S.J.D. (2009) and LL.M. (2005) from the University of Toronto, and LL.B degree (2003) in Law and Government from Reichman University (IDC) Herzliya, Israel (Magna cum Laude). Dr. Pinto’s research focuses on the issues of gender aspects of shaming, discrimination, and minority rights within multicultural societies (especially language rights and religious freedom), including the rights of women as minorities within minorities. Among her recent publications are: “Arbitrariness as Discrimination” 34(2) The Canadian Journal of Law and Jurisprudence 391-415 (2021)"; “The Impact of the Basic Law: Israel as the Nation State of the Jewish People on the Status of the Arabic Language in Israel” (forthcoming in the Minnesota Journal of International Law); “Gender Quotas and the Parity Paradigm in Israel” in Women And Legal Pluralism: Extending Parity Governance? (Oxford University Press, 2018).

Hannah RidgeHannah Ridge

Postdoctoral Scholar, Pozen Family Center for Human Rights
Ph.D., Political Science, Duke University

Hannah Ridge (she/her) is a postdoctoral scholar in Human Rights. Her work examines when citizens want democracy for their country and when they are satisfied with the democracy that they have. Additional research features religion/secularism politics. Hannah earned a PhD in Political Science at Duke University. At the University of Chicago, she will teach on gender and politics in the Muslim world and comparative democracy.

Kelsey RobbinsKelsey Robbins

Teaching Fellow in the Social Sciences, Comparative Human Development
Ph.D., Comparative Human Development, University of Chicago

Kelsey Robbins is a sociocultural and medical anthropologist with research interests in religion, moral authority, and the politics of gender and reproduction. Her current book project explores how lay Catholics in the Republic of Ireland are transforming popular and deeply entrenched understandings of Catholic morality and ethical action by challenging the authority of the Catholic hierarchy and by reconfiguring relationships between the laity, the clergy, and the Irish state. Her work argues that fundamental to these efforts to renew and revitalize Catholicism are negotiations surrounding gender, sexuality, family formation, and social and biological reproduction. As a Teaching Fellow, Kelsey serves as the BA Preceptor for the Department of Comparative Human Development and teaches courses on ethnographic research methods and reproductive politics.

Chao Wang

Teaching Fellow in the Social Sciences, History and the Pozen Family Center for Human Rights
Ph.D., History, University of Chicago

Chao (Alec) Wang is a social and cultural historian of twentieth-century China and a scholar of disability studies. His work in general examines how bodily variability shapes the boundary of community-based inclusion, and how changing notions about “disability” in relation to labor, gender and social entitlement impact the design and implementation of policies that attempt to institutionalize people with impairments. His current book project, tentatively entitled Disabled but Useful: the Blind in China, 1900-1945, examines different social welfare responses to the livelihood problem of blind people in a formative period of commercial and industrial expansion in China. Taking a journey through the urban lives of blind songstresses, musicians, fortunetellers and beggars as they intersected with entertainment culture, philanthropic activism, municipal reform and welfare legislation, the manuscript explores questions such as how blindness constituted gendered experiences in working places and perceived vulnerabilities of the body, as well as how the institutionalization of disability (canfei) through social welfare measures created new demarcations of social citizenship.

Ella Wilhoit

Earl S. Johnson Instructor of Anthropology, Master of Arts Program in the Social Sciences
Ph.D., Anthropology and Latin American and Caribbean Studies, Northwestern University

Ella Wilhoit is an Earl S. Johnson Instructor in Anthropology. Her research interests include gender, sexuality and embodied experience in cross-cultural context; labor and kinship in late capitalism; governmentality and statecraft as gendered processes; and the applications of Anthropological methodologies to understanding gendered ‘anxiety’ and identity in the US today. Ella is currently working on her first book manuscript on gendered labor and statecraft in the Andes. Her next project builds upon her interest in gendered experiences of rural life, but moves to the US south to examine rural narratives of political subjectivity and risk, focusing specifically on notions of masculinity and men’s tales of fear and empowerment. Ella teaches Gender, Sex and Culture and the Anthropology of the Body among other courses.