Cultural Studies

Cultural Studies

Interdisciplinary Graduate Program

Cultural Studies

Interdisciplinary Graduate Program

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PhD Students

As you’ll see from their bios below, Cultural Studies attracts a diverse group of students. Their scholarly work extends beyond the classroom, and into the world. Our students perform hands-on research in Argentina, China and Turkey, to name a few. They are artists who write plays, create works of art, curate museum spaces and use their artistic practices as their scholarship through research-creation. They win the highest academic accolades, including SSHRC, Fulbright and Vanier scholarships. They engage in community-based research, working with indigenous peoples, artists, students, prisoners and activist groups to bring about social transformation. Get to know a bit about them below!

​Meet Our 2017 Cohort
Sean Callaghan
Gary Kibbins
Saira Chhibber
Supervisors: Margaret Walker and Susan Lord
Saira holds an MA in Cinema Studies from the University of Toronto’s Cinema Studies Institute. She completed a BA Honours in Cinema Studies, with a double minor in Diaspora and Transnational Studies, and World Literatures at the University of Toronto (University College).
Her research interests include gender and national identities in Canadian and South Asian cinema and new media; transnational circulation of national cinemas; intersections of horror and ethnicity in contemporary popular cinema and culture; youth culture; popular culture; comic books and visual cultures.
Sebastian De Line

Sebastian De Line
Supervisor: Petra Fachinger and Dylan Robinson
My name is Sebastian De Line. I am an artist and PhD student in the Cultural Studies program at Queen’s University. My doctoral research project focuses on the three tenets of Indigenous science, as philosophised by Leroy Little Bear and New Materialism. I am interested in relationality, animacy, mattering, All My Relations, Haudenosaunee and paradigms of knowledge and worlding, trans studies, (non)human animal politics, affect and Barad and Haraway’s diffraction. My approach is philosophical, critical and at times, poetic.

I completed an M.A. in Art Praxis (cum laude) at the Dutch Art Institute in Arnhem, The Netherlands. My master’s thesis compared the works of Audra Simpson and Michel Serres to related discourses on indigeneity, posthuman, New Materialism, social and racial contract theory.

The basis of my subjectivity as a scholar and artist both inform and complicate the perspectives I write this from. I was born and raised in the Lower Mainland of British Columbia. My late father, Terry Deline, was of Dutch, Irish and Kaienkehaka (Mohawk) decent from the bear clan in Kahnewake. I also have Kaienkehaka relatives in Tyendinaga. They are my elders who teach me about our Haudenosaunee traditions. My mother is Cantonese and belongs to the Choo family. Her grandfather, Choo Ching Kew, arrived in Canada during 1909 as an indentured railway worker from China. Her family are fourth generation Canadian.

Yiyi He
Supervisors: Petra Fachinger and James Miller
Rena Karanouh
Supervisors: Sylvat Aziz and Laura Murray
James Kwateng-Yeboah
James Kwateng-Yeboah
Supervisor: Marc Epprecht
James’ research interests are broad, but tend to interrogate new dynamics of religious expressions in Africa and the African Diaspora, with a particular focus on the interconnectedness between religion and development, migration, civil society and the environment. His current doctoral research explores issues of contemporary African immigrants’ religiosity in Canada with a special focus on African initiated Pentecostal Churches. This study investigates reasons for the proliferation of African Pentecostal communities in Canada, the roles these communities play in the adaptation of new immigrants to their new environment, and the social change they engineer in their home and host context.
Nhi Ha Nguyen
Supervisor: Molly Wallace
Valerie Noftle
Supervisor: Karine Bertrand

Building on her three previous graduate degrees in Law (Osgoode Hall), Journalism (Western University) and Political Science (Dalhousie University), Noftle brings a truly interdisciplinary approach to her PhD in Cultural Studies at Queen’s. As an academic and as an artist, Noftle will incorporate the use of photographic images and video in creating innovative methods of research into visual cultural identity among Indigenous communities. With a focus on relationship-building through storytelling, Noftle seeks to facilitate communication and increased understanding among different peoples by creating visual bridges across cultures.

Josh Noiseux
Supervisor: James Miller
Bio: Joshua Noiseux is a PhD candidate in Cultural Studies at Queen’s University.  He completed his MA at Trent’s Theory, Culture, and Politics program, with a thesis on the American and Israeli militaries’ engagement with Deleuzean philosophy and its implications for their practices of strategy. Joshua’s emerging doctoral research attempts to synthesize various iterations of the concept of “reciprocal presupposition”, “mutual-enaction”, and “co-dependence” across continental philosophy, cognitive science, and Mahayana Buddhism, with specific respect to their participation in the development of non-linear concepts of causality, agency, and ecology. The core hypothesis of the project is that reciprocal models of causality can help provide ecologically constructive ways to think and experience agency as living-together with the world.
Michelle O'Halloran
Efkan Oguz
Efkan Oguz
Supervisors: Susan Lord and Lynda Jessup
Efkan Oguz obtained his BA degree (Hons) in American Studies from Ege University and recently received his MA in Media and Visual Studies from Bilkent University. During his time at Ege University, he took an interest in new media studies in relation to socio-political settings. In addition to writing several art and literature related articles for magazines, giving conference presentations and partaking in projects/workshops on topics such as cultural heritage and transmedia, he co-translated the book titled Writing the History of “Ottoman Music” (2015), and translated Development in Urban Transportation and Cultural Heritage: A Look at Turkey by Corduas (2016). Blending different aspects of the works in which he was involved, his MA research focused on the discursive reconfiguration of spatiotemporality in museums by means of new media and conceptualization of this transmutation based on Foucauldian literary theories. His PhD research expands on the implementation of new media within the museal context and its socio-cultural connotations with a focus on Ottoman heritage and nationalism.
Laura Phillips
Laura Phillips
Supervisor: Norman Vorano
Laura Phillips is from a Canadian settler family with Western European roots. She grew up in the south western Ontario Treaty 2/ Treaty 6 / Treaty 21 (Oneida Nation of the Thames, Chippewas of the Thames & Munsee-Delaware Nations) region of Canada. Prior to becoming a PhD candidate in Cultural Studies at Queens, her educational profile includes an undergraduate degree in Classical Studies from Western University; a post-graduate diploma at the University of Oxford; and an MPhil at the University of Bristol. Laura lived in England for 10 years, working at at museums and other cultural organizations. In 2010 she relocated to Doha, Qatar, where she was the Head of Museums Documentation for Qatar Museums until 2013. In 2014 she was appointed as Collections Manager at the Wolfsonian Museum in Miami Beach, Florida and then returned to Canada to take up a consulting position as Collections & Exhibitions Coordinator at Aanischaaukamikw Cree Cultural Institute in Ouje-Bougoumou Cree Nation, Eeyou Istchee, Quebec. In her PhD Research, Laura hopes to build on her experience in emerging museums, and working with Indigenous communities, to promote self-curation and self-representation as the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples is implemented internationally, as well as decolonization of museums and museology.
Rohit Revi
Rohit Revi
Supervisor: James Miller and Angus McBlane (Indian Institute of Technology)
Rohit is a first year PhD Candidate in Cultural Studies. He completed his Bachelors in Physics at Christ University, Bangalore and then received his Masters in Society and Culture from Indian Institute of Technology, Gandhinagar.
Research Interests: Philosophy of Technology, Contemporary Critical Theory.
Cana Sahin
Supervisor: Ariel Salzmann
Ben Schnitzer
Ben Schnitzer
Supervisors: Lynda Jessup and Jeffrey Brison
A graduate of the Master of Public Service program at the University of Waterloo, Ben enjoyed a diverse career in the federal government, most recently as a senior policy analyst at the Department of Canadian Heritage, where he helped develop and implement policies and programs impacting the cultural sector. Ben is also an opera singer. He graduated with a Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance from the University of Manitoba and pursued further studies in Vancouver, Italy and Germany. Ben has performed with organizations in Canada and abroad, such as the Vancouver Opera, the National Arts Centre Orchestra (Ottawa), and the Konzerthaus (Berlin). Ben is excited to bring these varied experiences to his work in the Cultural Studies program at Queen’s.
Research Interests: Cultural policy development, international relations, cultural diplomacy, Canadian cultural history, the arts in society.
Victoria Sicilia
Victoria Sicilia
Supervisor: James Miller
I am currently a Master’s Candidate in the Cultural Studies Interdisciplinary Graduate Program at Queen’s University, having recently completed my thesis fieldwork in the Malabar region at the University of Calicut in Kerala, India. My research is centered upon the visible and invisible impacts of gender differentiating ideology for Malayalam women in Kerala. In my doctoral work, I will examine how this ideology has resulted in growing numbers of suicide and violence against women in the region, despite subsequent staggering growth in education and physical health. To do this, I will explore the ways in which various socialization processes, including in residential and educational spheres, have contributed to the inculcation of patriarchal mindsets that are firmly embedded in the foundation of Malabar society. I aim to investigate how these mindsets are intrinsically canonized, creating societal, dominantly male, intransigence. By doing so, my research will explicate how and why women in Kerala possess the highest physical health index in the country, yet, simultaneously hold the lowest mental health index. Indeed the assumption that education congenitally fosters empowerment and freedom of mobility for women upon exploration has little bearing, as issues of violence, suicide, and restriction continue to rise in the Malabar region. My work, therefore, hopes to make a timely contribution to numerous academic disciplines discussing this issue, including political studies, gender studies, and global development studies.
Sarah Garton Stanley
Sarah Garton Stanely
Supervisors: Susan Lord and Dylan Robinson
Originally, from Montreal, Sarah now lives and studies in Kingston and works in Ottawa and beyond. A theatre director, dramaturg, creator and conversationalist, Sarah trained at École Jacques Lecoq, the Vancouver Film School and received her BA and MA from Queens University. In 2015 Sarah concluded a first cycle of dramaturgical inquiry as part English Theatre at Canada’s National Arts Centre’s relationship to Indigenous Performance happening in Canada. This happened in collaboration with Yvette Nolan, Corey Payette, Cole Alvis, Joseph Osawabine and countless other leaders and makers across Turtle Island. Along with co-curator Syrus Marcus Ware and other leaders and makers near and far, Sarah just completed work on the 2nd Cycle that culminated in the Republic of Inclusion in Ottawa in June of 2017. Work on the Cycles can be referenced here: Sarah is the Associate Artistic Director, English Theatre and creative catalyst at SpiderWebShow, and a former AD of Buddies in Bad Times Theatre.
Research Interests: Intersectionality, Failure Theatre, Performance, Cultural Change, Progressive Policy Frameworks, Conversation, Digital Connections, Space as Character, Iconoclasm, Dilettantism.
Tanzina Tahereen
Supervisor: Jill Scott
Camille Georgeson-Usher
Camille Georgeson-Usher
Supervisor: Dylan Robinson
Camille Georgeson-Usher is a Coast Salish/Dene/Scottish scholar and artist from Galiano Island, BC. She did her MA in Art History at Concordia University with research focusing on Indigenous community based artistic practices that bring forward conversations of fear, humour and sexuality as acts of cultural survivance that aim to reduce the rate of suicide in the Arctic. Both her research and artistic practice works through ideas of urban Indigenous identity rooted in melding together street art and hip hop culture, Indigeneity, and care for community. She began developing skills as a painter at a young age, which has now evolved into the world of street art, thinking of street art as a performative practice. Along with two colleagues Cheli Nighttraveller and Isabella Weetaluktuk, the three worked together to create an Indigenous women’s bikers collective called the Uppity NDNs, where they insert their visibility through street art and mobility through the bicycle as Indigenous women in space. She continues her work as an artist in Toronto when time permits, where she also works as the Programs Coordinator at the Inuit Art Foundation.
Meet Our ​2016 Cohort
Claude Bock
Claude Bock
​Supervisor: Dylan Robinson
Claude received his BFA from Concordia University and recently completed an MA in Art History at Western University. .His current research examines the intersections and interactions of truth and reconciliation with Indigenous art within Canada. Research interests: ethnocultural art histories and immigrant art within a settler society, the reception of indigenous art in Europe, and methods of disrupting the established art history canon. Claude also works as an independent curator. His most recent exhibit is Selections From the Collection: History, Culture, Legends at the Museum of Ontario Archaeology in London, Ontario held September 2016.
Sydney Hart
Sydney Hart
​Supervisor: Susan Lord
Sydney Hart is an artist and writer based on unceded Coast Salish territory in Vancouver BC. He has written criticism for publications such as Esse arts + opinions, C Magazine, Art & Education Papers and Scapegoat Journal, and shown work at venues such as VIVO Media Arts Centre, Skol and CCA Glasgow. From 2011, Sydney worked as a founding co-editor of livedspace, a research and publishing organisation investigating the social production of space in relation to contemporary cultural production. After studying Fine Art at Concordia University in Montréal and Central St Martins College in London, he completed an MA in Aesthetics and Art Theory from the Centre for Research in Modern European Philosophy in London.
Hanbai Han
Supervisor: Emily Hill
I am a first year PhD student in Cultural Studies. I am originally from Kunming, China and hold a BA in Anthropology from Sun Yat-sen University and a MA in Ethno-ecology from Yunnan University.
Research Interests: Environmental history research, Ecological Anthropology and China study.
Miles Howe
Supervisor: Bob Lovelace
Bronwyn Jaques
Bronwyn Jaques
Supervisors: Jeffrey Brison and Lynda Jessup
Bronwyn Jaques is a PhD student in the Cultural Studies Graduate Program at Queen's University. Her CGS Doctoral Scholarship-funded research focuses on settler-colonial tourism, cultural diplomacy, and national identity in the North American and local contexts. Professionally, she has undertaken research contracts with the Swamp Ward & Inner Harbour History Project (SWIHHP), the City of Kingston, and the "In Our Own Words: The Links Between Kingston's Heritage and its Penitentiaries," a community oral history project, for which she won a Lieutenant Governor’s Ontario Heritage Trust award for Excellence in Conservation in 2018. She is also the Project Coordinator for the North American Cultural Diplomacy Initiative (NACDI), a research group based at Queen's University. 
Research Interests: Canadian cultural history; ‘culture as tourism’ and dark tourism; the history of national parks and the commodification/nationalization of nature; cultural diplomacy; commemoration and remembrance; modern anti-modernism; national narratives in public spaces; media and advertising; imagined communities; and national mythologies.
Geraldine King
Supervisor: Scott Morgensen
Geraldine King is Anishinaabe (Ojibwe) from Kiashke Zaaging Anishinaabek in Northwestern Ontario. Geraldine recently completed an MA in Indigenous Governance at the University of Victoria, where her primary research was centred on Indigenous erotica as viable nation (re)building praxis. Ms. King is also the Managing Editor of Intercontinental Cry Magazine, a publication of the World Center for Indigenous Studies. As a mother, a dreamer, and a writer who happens to be an academic, Geraldine’s ultimate goal in the Cultural Studies Program at Queen's University is to encourage thoughtful reclamation of bodies, sexualities, psyches and anti-oppressive governance structures for all Indigenous peoples on the pathways to liberation. 
Stéfy McKnight
Supervisors: David Murakami Wood and Susan Cahill (University of Calgary)
Stéphanie McKnight (Stéfy) is an artist based in Kingston Ontario. Her creative practice and research focus is policy, activism, governance and surveillance trends in Canada. Within her research, she explores creative research as methodology, and the ways that events and objects produce knowledge and activate their audience. Stéfy’s creative work takes several forms, such as installation, performance, site-specific, online and technological curatorial projects, new media and experimental photography. Recent exhibitions include "Park Life" at MalloryTown Landing and Thousand Islands for LandMarks 2017/Repères 2017, "Traces" at Modern Fuel Artist-Run Centre, "ORGANIC SURVEILLANCE: Security & Myth in the Rural" at the Centre for Indigenous Research-Creation and "Hawk Eye View" at the Tett Centre for Creativity and Learning. Stéfy is also co-founder of "Pot-pourri: a collegiate exhibition", a graduate exhibition space for Cultural Studies students. She is curator of the Art and Media Lab at the Isabel Bader Centre for Performing Arts and has curated several exhibitions including "Judy Radul, This is Television" in 2015. Stéfy is an active member of the Kingston Arts community as past President of the Modern Fuel Board of Directors, member of CUST Steering Research Creation Committee and has worked at the Kingston Arts Council and Agnes Etherington Art Centre. Stéfy has a BFA from Nipissing University and a MA in Cultural Studies from Queen's University.
Research Interests: surveillance art; contemporary art and cultural objects; creative research as methodology; surveillance in Canada; the War on Terror; North America privacy, policy & security; non-consensual watching of non-human animals; visual and material culture.
Golam Rabbani
Supervisor: Margaret Walker
Golam Rabbani is from Bangladesh and has taught literature, language and culture in universities in his country for more than seven years. He studied English (BA Honors and MA) in Jahangirnagar University. As a grantee of Erasmus Mundus Scholarship, he studied literature, linguistics and cultural theories for two years and received his second MA in Literature and Linguistics: English (with Distinction) from the University of Antwerp, Belgium, in 2015. Some of his recently published research articles concentrate on Darwinism in novels, pedophilia and patriarchy in Bangladeshi film, voyeurism in media, hetero-imperialism in films, alienation and segregation in postcolonial texts, naturalism and expressionism in plays and so forth. He has also presented his research papers in many international conferences. His recent conference papers and projects investigated the Ecocritical and Cognitive approaches to Bangladeshi folk literature (Baul Literature) and culture. His PhD research in Queen’s focuses on the study of Ethnomusicology examining the intersections of Baul literature and music with contemporary consumer culture in Bangladesh. He learned Bangladeshi folk music and Indian classical music from Chhayanaut in Dhaka, Bangladesh.
Research Interests: Baul Literature, Music and Culture; Cognitive Approaches to Literature; Representation in Media and Films; Postcolonial Literature; American Literature; Literary and Cultural Theory; Drama and Theater.
Galen Watts
Supervisor: James Miller
Galen is a first year PhD Candidate in the Cultural Studies Graduate Program at Queen’s University. He has a broad and diverse range of academic interests. Currently, his research could be classified as convening at the intersection of political philosophy, religious studies, and social theory. For his Masters, he sought to articulate and analyze how Canadian millennials (ages 18-34) who self-identify as “spiritual but not religious” conceptualize the relationship between their individual spirituality and their commitments, or lack thereof, to a number of social justice issues. For his PhD, he is continuing to research the basic values, belief-systems, and practices that inform contemporary spirituality among millennials in Canada, in order to discern the ideological nature of contemporary spirituality, as well as its social and political implications, broadly understood. Research Interests: Contemporary spirituality; spiritual but not religious; secularism; religion and society; social and political thought; ethics; social justice education.
Meet Our ​2015 Cohort
Daniel Asante Boamah
Daniel Asante Boamah
​Supervisor: Awet Weldemichael
Research Interests: My research interest focuses on the connection between traditional religio-cultural beliefs/practices and environmental problems. Most especially how African Traditional Religion and cultural beliefs/practices inspire (or impede) active environmental ethics.

Julia Chan
Supervisor: Susan Lord
Julia Chan is a writer, editor, creative consultant, and arts administrator with over ten years’ experience in the arts and not-for-profit communities. Her fiction has appeared internationally in subTerrain, LitroNY, The Rusty Toque, The Danforth Review, and others. As a screenwriter, she holds an MFA from York University and is a graduate of the Canadian Film Centre’s writing residency program. Her short film In Shadow (directed by Shirley Cheechoo) screened at the Sundance Film Festival, among others. She currently provides creative analysis, grant writing, and editing on a freelance basis, and is pursuing a PhD in Cultural Studies.
Research Interests: The intersections of gender, sexuality, and surveillance; visual culture; photography; the gaze; horror film and the uncanny; and race and liminality ​
Alexander Cox-Twardowski
Alexander Cox-Twardowski
Supervisor: Richard Ascough
Research Interests: Judeo-Christian apocalyptic literature; religion and film; contemporary Hollywood apocalyptic cinema; hypermasculinity in apocalyptic works; time in apocalyptic works; gender representations in post-1960s Hollywood horror film.

Jamie Jelinski
​Supervisors: Jeffrey Brison and Sarah E. K. Smith
Jamie Jelinski is an interdisciplinary scholar and PhD student in Cultural Studies at Queen’s University. He holds an M.A. in Art History from Concordia University (2015) and a B.A. in Fine Art from the University of Regina (2013). Using visual and material culture, archival sources, and oral histories, Jelinski’s doctoral research investigates professional tattooing’s public history in Canada from the 1890s to the 1970s. For this work he is the recipient of the Senator Frank Carrel Scholarship (2015-16), the Ontario Graduate Scholarship (2015-16), and the Joseph-Armand Bombardier Canada Graduate Scholarship (2016-19). Other recent awards he has received include the inaugural David Edney Research Travel Award (2016), the Graduate Dean’s Doctoral Field Travel Grant (2017), and a SSHRC Michael Smith Foreign Study Supplement (2016) that he took up during Fall 2017 at the University of Essex’s School of Philosophy and Art History. In Spring 2017 he spent three months in Halifax researching for his dissertation as a Visiting Scholar at NSCAD University, where he also taught an undergraduate course on the global histories of tattooing. Jelinski has presented his work at numerous academic conferences including the annual meetings of the Canadian Historical Association (2017), the Universities Art Association of Canada (2015; 2016), the Canadian Communication Association (2016), and the Popular Culture Association of Canada (2015). He has published and forthcoming articles in Visual Anthropology (Vol. 30, No. 4) and Études/Inuit/Studies (Vol. 40, No. 2).

Research interests: histories of tattooing in Canada; the body and its representation; visual and material culture of cities; visual and material culture of crime; urban social history; archives; 20th century Canadian studies 

Tanya Lukin-Linklater
Tanya Lukin-Linklater
Supervisor: Dylan Robinson
Tanya Lukin Linklater's practice spans experimental choreography, performance, video, and text. She is compelled by the interstices of visual art and poetry, pedagogy (learning), Indigenous languages, portrayals of women and children in film, and the body. Tanya’s works have been exhibited at EFA Proejct Space (NYC), Museum of Contemporary Art Santiago (Chilé), SBC Gallery (Montreal), Western Front (Vancouver), Urban Shaman (Winnipeg), Images Festival + Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art (Toronto), Nuit Blanche Winnipeg, Museum of Contemporary Native Art (Santa Fe), and elsewhere. Her poetry and essays have been published in C Magazine, Access Gallery, BlackFlash Magazine, Yellow Medicine Review, Taos International Journal of Poetry and Art, Drunken Boat, Ice Floe, and McLaren Art Centre. Tanya studied at University of Alberta (M.Ed.) and Stanford University (A.B. Honours) where she received the Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellowship and the Louis Sudler Prize for Creative and Performing Arts. She began her doctoral studies at Queen's University in Cultural Studies in September, 2015.
Research Interests: critical positions on Indigenous Art; the interstices of visual art, poetry and performance; race, feminisms, the body, pedagogies, Indigenous knowledges, dance.
 Morgan Oddie
Morgan Oddie
​Supervisor: Pamela Dickey-Young
Research Interests: Performativity and play; the interaction between cultures of regulation and violence; consensual violence; Bondage/Domination/submission/Sadism/Masochism (BDSM) as ritual.
Susan Fowler Olding
Susan Olding
​Supervisor: Petra Fachinger
Research Interests: My project combines lyric and experimental poetry, a lyric essay, and opera to explore questions about trauma, loss, power, identity, and meaning in the context of transnational/ transracial adoption.
Kaziwa Salih
Kaziwa Salih​
Supervisor: Jill Scott and Andrew Woolford (University of Manitoba) 
Kaziwa is a multi- award winning fiction and non-fiction writer, and social and human rights activist
Research Interests: Genocide and War culture, Cross-Cultural Psychology, Kurdish issues generally, Communication and Culture, Socio-political cultural theory, Gender and women issues.
Ellyn Walker
Supervisor: Dylan Robinson and Carla Taunton
Research interests: decolonial methodologies, cross-cultural relationships, settler-colonial decolonization and redress, solidarity and resistance movements, (re)conciliation, social justice, curatorial practice, contemporary art, Canadian art history, museum studies, artist-run culture, the politics of representation, local black and diasporic histories, Indigenous worldviews, collaboration, social and community engagement.
Meet Our ​2014 Cohort
Craig Berggold 
Supervisors: Gary Kibbins and Clive Roberston
Media artist Craig Berggold strives to combine social justice activism with a contemporary art practice. His PhD research examines the visual culture of the precarious and so-called marginalized, who are now the majority, and whose lives are cobbled together with their work and personal lives indistinct and interchangeable. How are the precarious made visible and seen? The precariat work in temporary, intermittent, part-time jobs or internships, are migrant or flexible in their time and mobility, self-invest, often exist in perpetual debt, and with particular note to educated young people globally and women and racialized as a majority of the precarious workforce. Craig is a recipient of a 2016 SSHRC Canada Graduate Doctoral Scholarship and the 2015-16 Douglas Sheppard Wilson Film Fellowship Award. He is a Teaching Fellow in the Film and Media Department. And, elected four times as the President of Public Service Alliance of Canada (PSAC) local 901- the union representing 2000 academic workers on precarious short-term contracts every semester. His award-winning films Fresh Talk: Youth & Sexuality, Educate Your Attitude: Gay & Lesbian Youth Speak Out!, Pocket Desert: confessions of a snakekiller and Up To Scratch have been broadcast on television and shown in film festivals, museums and community centres around the world. At Simon Fraser University’s Special Collections Library he is the lead researcher for The Canadian Farmworkers Union Archive Project. He has taught at Emily Carr University of Art & Design for a decade and is the co-founder of the Vancouver Mayworks Festival of Working People and the Arts
Research Interests: the evolving fields of cultural labour studies, militant research, visual culture, precarious as a new class.
Kristian Clarke
Supervisors: Lynda Jessup and Jeffrey Brison
An Art History graduate with an additional Certificate in Cultural Management from Humber College, Kristian worked at Canadian Artists Representation/le front des artistes canadiens (CARFAC Ontario) for 14 years and is now the Senior Projects Manager at Canadian Actors' Equity Association ( Kristian sees himself as a Creative Visionary with particular interests in artist-run advocacy, proposal development, dispute resolution and policy development at municipal, provincial and federal levels. Kristian also serves on the Board for the Canadian Arts Resources Foundation of Ontario [(CARFO) recently rebranded as CANVAS], WorkInCulture, which supports the people who work in the cultural sector through life-long career development and business skills training and Arts Build Ontario which is the only organization in Ontario dedicated to realizing long-term solutions for building, managing and financing the sustainable arts facilities needed in Ontario communities. In his spare time, Kristian can be found swimming with his 10 year-old daughter named Phoibe on Georgian Bay or listening to his wife, Krisztina Szabo, perform one of her many operatic roles. Kristian is a current Phd Candidate in the Cultural Studies Department at Queen’s University. Research Interests: Artist-centred advocacy, cultural policy, Massey Commission

Yasmine Djerbal
Supervisor: Katherine McKittrick
Research interests: Located at the intersection of identity politics, postcolonial/decolonial theories, race studies and affect theories, and engages with questions of immigration and the politics of race, gender and religion in discourses of citizenship. Her previous works focused on gendered violence; Algerian citizenship and the Family Code; North African feminist activism; the Algerian Civil War; Resistance; Political Comic Strips and Islam.

Lois Klassen
Lois Klassen
Supervisor: Dorit Naaman
Lois Klassen is an artist known for intricate long-range projects that invite and engage participants in collective actions. Many of her projects, like Comforter Art Action and Reading the Migration Library, address social and political concerns. Her work deliberately faces ethical demand with social, aesthetic and material methods. Klassen's field work is investigating ethical frameworks employed by artists who respond to forced migration or border zone violence. Klassen is a lively participant and eager collaborator in Vancouver's art, performance art and media art happenings. Her writing has taken on such wide-ranging topics as the public impact of performance art, the relevance of art coming out of nowhere, and migration. The open network practices of the 1980s and '90s had a large influence on Klassen's emerging art years. Renegade Library, a major mail art project that she produced in the '90s, is currently being acquisitioned by international archives and collections (including Institute of American Indian Arts Library, MoMA Library, Centro de Desarrollo des les Artes Visualles, Wendy's Subway, Crista Dahl Media Library & Archives, Also As Well Too, Emily Carr Library, Art Gallery of Southwestern Manitoba). Klassen's work has been hosted and supported by institutions in the US, Canada, Mexico and the UK. She is as a Research Ethics Coordinator at Emily Carr University.
Research Interests :Participatory art; research ethics; writing as methodology; research-creation.
Jennifer Lemche
Supervisor: James Miller
Research Interests: Religion, Daoism, Daoism and Ecology, Chinese Religion, China, Religion and Ecology, Environmental Ethics, Sustainability, Environmental Activism, Climate Change
My project explores the contribution of Daoism in discussions of climate change and environmental activism in China. It asks how recent environmental policies and programs promoted by the Chinese Daoist Association, the national Association responsible for overseeing the Daoist community in China, are creating sustainable practices in Daoist temples and communities and to what extent these policies are informing day to day activities. More broadly, my research investigates how discussions of sustainability and climate change are shaping modern Daoism in China.
Jamie McKenzie-Naish
Supervisors: Lynda Jessup and Jeffrey Brison
Research Interests: museums as a pedagogical intervention, their relationship to public policy making, and ultimately how policy negotiates and contextualizes individual and community attitudes, engagement, and access.
Bio: My professional background is eclectic and interdisciplinary in nature.  I am a formally trained classroom teacher and an experienced museum educational specialist, with particular skills focus on resource development and program management.  I hold my Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in Classical History and Anthropology, my Bachelor of Education with Primary/Junior certification, my Master of Arts in Museum Studies, as well as my PRINCE2 project management professional certification (APMG International).   With over 15 years’ experience in both the learning and cultural sectors, I have worked in a variety of formal and informal learning environments, a variety of museum collections and with a variety of learning audiences and groups, both in Canada and the United Kingdom.  My research interests are also interdisciplinary in nature, with a critical focus on cultural and narrative engagements. My current doctoral research explores the intersection of public pedagogy and public policy with a national museum context, and its relationship to conceptual construct of the post-museum.
Freddy Monasterio
Supervisors: Karen Dubinsky and Susan Lord
Research Interests: independence and alternativity in musical production; post-1990 Cuba; transition economy; digitalization of music
Spencer Revoy
Supervisor: David Murakami Wood
Research Interests: critical theories of technology design; new media determinism; the phenomenology of surveillance; the intellectual history and politics of computing culture; the digital as an aesthetic condition of subjective and ecological production; categories of performative force, especially digital articulations of the theatrical; poststructuralism and media archaeology.  
Lindsay Rodgers
Supervisors: Jacqueline Davies and Susan Lord
Research Interests: Lindsay’s research considers the ways that stand-up comediennes, when they perform funny versions of the female grotesque, a figure who embodies the excessive, unruly body generally abjected from the dominant social order, facilitate and engage in a process of denaturalizing the terms of the (white) feminine ideal. Through reframing the grotesque form as something to take pleasure in, rather than feel ashamed of or disgusted by, comediennes reorient themselves, and audiences, to their bodies. Research interests include: the female grotesque; abjection; embodied and elicit pleasures; the unruly, excessive body; performativity; affect; humor, laughter, comedy; intersectionality; feminist critical discourse analysis; feminist ethnography. 

Lib Spry
Supervisor: Clarke Mackey
Lib has a B.A. in Drama from the University of Saskatchewan and an MFA in Creative Writing from Goddard College, Vermont. A theatre worker for over fifty years, she is presently researching how to unsettle settlers through the playing of games. Research interests that feed into this work include: popular, applied and vernacular theatre; political theatre and humour; old familiar stories told from the woman’s viewpoint;  the body and voice as primary vehicles in the intellectual process; sound and silence on stage and off; interventions in public and private space.

​Meet Our 2013 Cohort

Dian Day
Supervisor: Sammi King
Research Interests: food studies; the cultural meanings of food and eating; family and community studies; history of agriculture; sustainability


Milad Dokhanchi
Email: (in Persian)
Research Interests: governmentality, history of Shia Islam, Deleuze's Nomadology, Islamic revolution, activist art and multiculturalism
Documentary Films: Multiculturalism Unveiled; New York Underground; Revolution in Motion


Poyraz Kolluoglu
Supervisor: Ariel Salzmann
Poyraz completed his undergraduate studies at Bilkent University, Ankara in the department of International Relations, earned his master degree in Political Science in 2010 at Marmara University, Istanbul. During his graduate studies, he spent one year in Pavia University, Italy, thereby began developing interest in, microhistory, sociology of emotions, historical sociology, Autonomist Marxism. He was involved in a research project regarding urban migration flows in Turkey as a research assistant. He was also a Ph.D. student at Bogazici University before starting his research in Canada.
Research Interests: Theories of Nationalism, Social Movements, Autonomist Marxism, Critical Theory, Representations in Popular Culture, Affect Theory, Sociology of Emotions, Sociology of Music, Turkish Migration Flows, Historiography, Microhistory, Ottoman Empire in 19th century, Socio-Economic history of Turkey, World and Middle Eastern History.

Robin Alex McDonald
Supervisors: Dr. Allison Morehead (Department of Art, Queen's University) and Dr. Erin Silver (Department of Art History, Visual Art, & Theory, UBC)
Research Interests: visual culture studies; feminist, queer, and trans theories; activist art and art-as-activism; collaborative modes of artistic and cultural production; theories of relationality, collectivity, "love," and the social; affect and emotion.
Shawn Newman
Supervisor: Margaret Walker
Research Interests: Shawn's PhD work, Performing Multiculturalism: Towards a Stronger Discourse through Praxis-­‐based Critiques (working title) seeks to re‐centre cultural production in critical multiculturalism discourses by arguing that the very power with which cultural production fetishizes race and ethnicity can be mobilized to subvert these essentialized notions.
Adam Saifer
Supervisor: Laura Murray
Research Interests: the arts within development histories, policies, and practices; creative economy discourse; the arts and schooling; multiculturalism and Canadian citizenship; sociology of education; marxist, post-colonial, and feminist theory.

Angela Silver
Research Interests: how language inhabits the body and the innumerable ways our bodies perform language; communication systems and their artifacts.
My work uses trans-disciplinary techniques to look critically and poetically at Western societies’ relationship with information and communication and implicitly the meaning embedded there. This research focuses on the residue of language, examining the diverse ways in which it inhabits the body. I re-interpret the artifacts and paraphernalia that accompany our various linguistic systems and writing tools. Re-interpreting obsolete writing artifacts, such as typewriter balls, is a method for me to examine the representation of language and to examine the authority of text. Re-working these systems and their instruments are strategies to examine the material and matter of communication and the profound ways we perform language. By repurposing lapsed or overlooked information devices, I re-engage and adapt informational content and meaning through methodologies that engage the body at scales ranging from the handheld to the infrastructural.

Michelle Smith
Supervisors: Caroline-Isabelle Caron and Frances Leeming
Research Interests: Stop motion Animation; Monster Studies; Film Studies; Visual Studies; Material Culture; Abjection; the Gothic; Popular Culture; The Uncanny; Ugliness; The Sublime; Posthumanism; The Dead, Undead and Zombies; Fairy Tales and the Fantastic 

Dan Vena
Supervisor: Eleanor MacDonald
Research Interests: Classical Hollywood; horror cinema; genre theory; monster studies; histories of medicine; psychoanalysis; trans* studies; queer and feminist theory; masculinities studies; visual cultures; popular culture; comic books and graphic novels
Amanda White
Supervisors: Lynda Jessup and Sarah E. K.  Smith
Research Interests: Interdisciplinary and collaborative art practices, art and the environment, art as activism, bioart, posthumanities, issues in agriculture and food, urban ecology, human-plant exchanges and relationships, the real vs. imagined in nature.
​Meet Our 2012 Cohort
Ana M. Ruiz Aguirre
Supervisors: Lynda Jessup and Catherine Krull
Ana M. Ruiz Aguirre is a Cuban writer and researcher, affiliated with the Research Group on Public Diplomacy and the Economy of Culture (PDEC) at Queen’s University. Her doctoral research, for which she received a SSHRC Joseph Armand Bombardier Scholarship, examines the role of cultural diplomacy in the ongoing negotiation of the U.S.-Cuba conflict, paying particular attention to the multilateral impact of Cuban visual art exhibitions displayed in Canada and Mexico after the legalization of Cuban artwork in the U.S. in 1990.
Research Interests: cultural diplomacy and hegemony; contemporary Cuban visual art; public diplomacy; international art market economy; Latin American art history; U.S-Cuba conflict; post-colonial studies; subaltern studies.
Leah Decter
Research Interests: contemporary conditions of settler colonialism in Canada; trade practices; Indigenous - settler collaboration, and settler engagement in practices of reconciliation and decolonization; the role(s) that cultural production can play in these practices; material, discursive, collaborative and performative strategies.
Elizabeth Diggon
Supervisors: Lynda Jessup and Jeffrey Brison
Research interests:  modern and contemporary visual culture in Canada, international cultural relations, museum representation and postwar Canadian cultural history. My dissertation, “Exhibiting Diplomacy: Art and International Cultural Relations in Cold War Canada,” examines the mobilization of art as a means of cultural diplomacy in the Canadian context from the mid-to-late twentieth century. I am also an independent curator and art writer, with recent projects including an exhibition at the Agnes Etherington Art Centre, and catalogue essays for the Union Gallery and the University of Lethbridge Art Gallery
Sunny Kerr
Curator of Contemporary Art, Agnes Etherington Art Centre
Adjunct Assistant Professor, Department of Art, Queen's University
Research interests: contemporary art; artist-run institutions; performance studies; social practice; neoliberal subjectivity; affective, aesthetic and political economies of aspiration
Zhi Lei
Supervisor: Petra Fachinger
Research interests: environment and literature; environment and films; ecocriticism; Chinese, Taiwanese, and North American literature and films that discuss environmental issues; Asian diaspora
Maya Stitski
My research analyzes the ways that hip hop narratives are critical pedagogical commentaries that engage, complicate, and deepen understandings of political landscapes, subversive histories, racism, economic inequities, heterosexuality, and patriarchy, in Canadian undergraduate classrooms. Reading across black studies, hip hop studies, and hip hop pedagogies, my paper will analyze the ways that hip hop (particularly lyrics and accompanying visual content) undoes colonial and anti-black logics and celebrates subversive and non-normative sexualities in North America. I follow this point to argue that hip hop lyrics are critical pedagogies and undervalued “lesson plans” for Canadian undergraduate classrooms.