Faculty Mentors

Headshot for Ammiel AlcalayAmmiel Alcalay grew up in Boston. A poet, novelist, translator, critic, and scholar, his books include a little history, from the warring factions, “neither wit nor gold”(from then), Islanders, Scrapmetal: work in progress, Memories of Our Future: Selected Essays, 1982-1999, and After Jews and Arabs: Remaking Levantine Culture. In the 1980s, Alcalay worked with various grass roots organizations in Israel/Palestine, including East for Peace, The Oriental Front, the Committee Confronting the Iron Fist, and the Alternative Information Center, while also reporting for Amnesty and other Human Rights organizations.During the war in former Yugoslavia, he was one of the only translators working from Bosnian, and translated numerous texts emerging directly from the war, including Sarajevo: A War Journal by Zlatko Dizdarević and The Tenth Circle of Hell by camp survivor Rezak Hukanović. A Dove in Flight, by Syrian poet and former political prisoner Faraj Bayrakdar, co-edited with Shareah Taleghani, is forthcoming, as well as Ghost Talk and A Bibliography for After Jews and Arabs. He is the founder and general editor, under the auspices of the PhD program in English and the Center for the Humanities at the Graduate Center, CUNY, of Lost & Found: The CUNY Poetics Document Initiative, ongoing work which was recognized in 2017 with a Before Columbus Foundation American Book Award.

Headshot for Kandice ChuhKandice Chuh is a professor of English, American studies, and Critical Social Psychology at the CUNY Graduate Center, where she is also a member of the M.A. in Liberal Studies faculty, and affiliate faculty to the Africana studies program. She is currently Executive Officer of the PhD Program in English, and in the past served as Coordinator of the American Studies Certificate Program and acting associate director of the Center for Place, Culture, and Politics. The author of The Difference Aesthetics Makes: on the humanities ‘after Man’ (2019), which won the Association for Asian American Studies Humanities and Cultural Studies Book Award, and Imagine Otherwise: on Asian Americanist Critique (2003), which won the American Studies Association’s Lora Romero Book Award, Chuh is co-editor, with Karen Shimakawa, of Orientations: Mapping Studies in the Asian Diaspora (2001). President of the American Studies Association from 2017-18, Chuh is a member of the Association for Asian American Studies and the Modern Language Association. She is at work on a collection of essays titled The Disinterested Teacher, and her current research focuses on Asian racialization in the era of globalization. Chuh teaches courses on aesthetic theory, queer of color critique, women of color feminisms, decolonial studies, and Asian and Asian American racialization.

Headshot for Alyson Cole

Alyson Cole is Professor of Political Science, Women & Gender Studies, and American Studies at Queens College and The Graduate Center. Cole’s work bridges political theory and American politics/culture, linking central questions of political thought with an examination of political ideologies, rhetoric, and law/policy-making, emphasizing gender, sexuality, and race. Her books include The Cult of True Victimhood, Derangement and Liberalism, and How Capitalism Forms Our Lives. Her articles have appeared in journals such as Signs, American Studies, Theory & Event, Gender, Work & Organization, Critical Horizons, and WSQ. She serves as co-editor of philoSOPHIA: A Journal of transContinental Feminism, and is the recipient of the 2008 President’s Award for Excellence in Teaching, a Mellon Resident Fellowship at the Humanities Center (2009-10). She is currently serving as a principal investigator in the “Vulnerable & Dynamic Forms of Life” International Network of Research, an interdisciplinary research collective supported by funding from the National Center for Scientific Research.

Headshot for Dána-Ain Davis

Dána-Ain Davis is Professor of Urban Studies and Anthropology.  She is the director of the Center for the Study of Women and Society at the Graduate Center. Davis’ work covers two broad domains: Black feminist ethnography and the dynamics of race and racism. She is the author or co-editor of five books and her most recent book Reproductive Injustice: Racism, Pregnancy, and Premature Birth (2019). Davis has participated in reproductive rights and reproductive justice and has worked with a range of organizations on reproductive justice issues including NARAL-NY, the Reproductive Rights Education Project at Hunter College, and the National Network of Abortion Funds. Davis worked with Sexual and Reproductive Justice Project for the New York City Department of Health, and Mental Health and served on Governor Cuomo’s Maternal and Morality Task Force.  Davis also supports birthing people as a doula and trained at Ancient Song Doula. Davis is the co- editor of the new journal Feminist Anthropology, and has served as editor of Transforming Anthropology. She is on the board of directors of the National Institute for Reproductive Health (NIRH) and is involved in making grants for community organizing.

Headshot for Fernando DegiovanniFernando Degiovanni is Professor of Latin American, Iberian, and Latino Cultures at The Graduate Center, CUNY, and current President of the Instituto International de Literatura Iberoamericana (IILI). He is the author of two award-winning books: Los textos de la patria: Nacionalismo, políticas culturales y canon en Argentina (2007), which was awarded the IILI’s Alfredo Roggiano Prize for Latin American Cultural and Literary Criticism, and Vernacular Latin Americanisms: War, the Market, and the Making of a Discipline (2018), which won the LASA’s Southern Cone Studies Section Award for Best Book in the Humanities. He is also co-editor of Latin American Literature in Transition, 1870-1930 (Cambridge University Press, forthcoming), and has guest-edited Comunidades y relatos del libro en América Latina (2015). Degiovanni’s current research focuses on issues of performativity, embodiment, and spectacularization in early twentieth century Argentina. Drawing on contemporary theory and extensive archival research, he examines the way in which Avant-guard writers conceptually and materially experimented with their own bodies in public venues, and, by doing so, explored questions concerning the right to appear in public and the democratization of the public sphere. The intellectual performances that Degiovanni studies in his project address human-nonhuman relations, gendered technologies, visual and haptic practices, and mobility and disability issues.

Headshot for Tom DeGlomaThomas DeGloma is Associate Professor of sociology at Hunter College and the CUNY Graduate Center. He specializes in the areas of culture, cognition, memory, symbolic interaction, and sociological theory. His research interests also include the sociology of time, knowledge, autobiography, identity, and trauma. Professor DeGloma’s book, Seeing the Light: The Social Logic of Personal Discovery (University of Chicago Press), explores the stories people tell about life-changing discoveries of “truth” and illuminates the ways that individuals and communities use autobiographical stories to weigh in on salient moral and political controversies. Professor DeGloma has also published articles in Social Psychology Quarterly, Symbolic Interaction, Sociological Forum, and the American Journal of Cultural Sociology, along with several chapters in various edited volumes. He is currently working on his second book, Anonymous: The Performance and Impact of Hidden Identities (under contract with University of Chicago Press). In addition, DeGloma is co-editing the Oxford Handbook of Symbolic Interaction (With Wayne H. Brekhus and William Ryan Force) and a twelve volume book series titled Interpretive Lenses in Sociology (with Julie B. Wiest, under contract with Bristol University Press). Professor DeGloma teaches courses on cognitive sociology/social memory studies, interpersonal behavior (microsociology/symbolic interaction), and classical and contemporary sociological theory. He has served as President of the Society for the Study of Symbolic Interaction (2017-2018), Secretary of the Eastern Sociological Society (2016-2019), and Chair of the Hunter College Senate (2016-2019).

Headshot for José del ValleJosé del Valle is Professor of Latin American, Iberian and Latino Cultutes, and Professor of Linguistics at The Graduate Center, CUNY. His research and teaching are theoretically anchored in sociolinguistics and glottopolitical studies (political theorizations of language). He has mainly focused on the institutionalization of Spanish in the 19th- and 20th-centuries and, through this topic, on the relationship between language standardization, normativity and power. In 2010, he received the Friedrich Wilhelm Bessel Award from the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation for his research accomplishments.


Headshot for Michelle FineMichelle Fine is a Distinguished Professor of Critical Psychology, Women’s Studies, American Studies and Urban Education at the Graduate Center, CUNY and founding faculty member of The Public Science Project. Fine taught at the University of Pennsylvania from 1981 – 1991, and then came to the Graduate Center. She has served as an expert witness in a range of educational , racial and gender justice class action lawsuits including girls suing for access to Central High School in Philadelphia and The Citadel in South Carolina, students of color suing for racial equity in Wedowee Alabama, youth fighting for equitable financing and facilities in Williams v. State of California, and most recently a finance inequity lawsuit for the children of Baltimore. She has authored many “classics” – books and articles on high school push outs, adolescent sexuality – called the “missing discourse of desire,” the national evaluation of the impact of college in prison, the struggles and strength of the children of incarcerated adults, the wisdom of Muslim American youth. Fine has been recognized with a range of awards from Stanford University and Teachers College Columbia, the American Psychological Association and the American Educational Research Association.

Headshot for Jean Graham-JonesJean Graham-Jones is the Lucille Lortel Professor of Theatre at the City University of New York’s Graduate Center, where she served as head of the PhD Program in Theatre and Performance (2009-2016). A practicing actor and director, she is a scholar and translator of Argentine and Latin American theatre and performance. Her translations of plays by Lola Arias, Federico León, Ricardo Monti, Rafael Spregelburd, Claudio Tolcachir, and Daniel Veronese have been used as supertitles and/or staged in New York, Chicago, London, Liverpool, and other cities. Major publications include Exorcising History: Argentine Theater Under Dictatorship (2000), Reason Obscured: Nine Plays by Ricardo Monti (ed. and trans., 2004), BAiT: Buenos Aires in Translation (ed. and trans., 2008), Timbre 4: Two Plays by Claudio Tolcachir (ed. and trans., 2010), Evita, Inevitably: Performing Argentina’s Female Icons Before and After Eva Perón (2014), and Lola Arias: Re-Enacting Life (ed., 2019). A former editor of Theatre Journal, she recently completed her term as President of the International Federation for Theatre Research (2015-2019). Her latest monographic project centers on contemporary performance translation.

Headshot for Alexis JemalAlexis Jemal, LCSW, LCADC, JD, PhD, assistant professor at Silberman School of Social Work-Hunter College, is a scholar, artivist, educator, social entrepreneur and critical/radical social worker whose work facilitates the potential to transform consciousness into action. Dr. Jemal studies and practices the consilience of racial justice and healing with the mission to recognize and respond to oppressive policies and practices to prevent and eliminate domination, exploitation, and discrimination that pose barriers to life, wellness, liberty, and justice. Dr. Jemal’s scholarship uses participatory action research methods to develop and test multi-level and multi-systemic socio-behavioral health practices that integrate the creative arts (e.g., applied theatre), sociodrama, critical theory, community and cultural organizing, restorative justice frameworks, radical healing and liberation health models to address structural, community and interpersonal violence. Dr. Jemal’s work spans epigenetics to cultural study, and draws from the disciplines of Public Humanities, Social Sciences, Education, Public Health, Criminal Justice, and Neuroscience. The interdisciplinary nature of Dr. Jemal’s research and practice creates an innovative synergy leading to holistic and dynamic discoveries for intervention.

Headshot for Erika LinErika T. Lin is an Associate Professor in the Ph.D. Program in Theatre and Performance at the Graduate Center, CUNY. She is the author of Shakespeare and the Materiality of Performance, which received the 2013 David Bevington Award for Best New Book in Early Drama Studies. With Gina Bloom and Tom Bishop, she edited the essay collection Games and Theatre in Shakespeare’s England (forthcoming 2021). Her prize-winning articles have appeared in Theatre Journal, New Theatre Quarterly, and elsewhere. She is now writing a book on seasonal festivities and early modern commercial theatre, a project recognized by various honors and grants including an Andrew W. Mellon Long-Term Fellowship at the Folger Shakespeare Library. She recently served as the Book Review Editor of Theatre Survey and as a member of the Board of Trustees of the Shakespeare Association of America, for whom she continues as the Board representative to the Bylaws Committee.

Headshot for David PetrainDavid Petrain is Associate Professor of Classics at Hunter College and The Graduate Center. A scholar of Greek and Latin poetry and Roman material culture, he has received grants from the National Endowment for the Humanities and held fellowships at the American Academy in Rome and the Institute for Advanced Study (Princeton). He is the author of Homer in Stone: The Tabulae Iliacae in their Roman context (Cambridge University Press, 2014) and co-editor of The Muse at Play: Riddles and wordplay in Greek and Latin poetry (de Gruyter, 2013). He has published articles on Latin love poetry, Greek epigrams preserved on papyrus and stone, the decoration of ancient Rome’s public libraries, and visual storytelling in the ancient world. He is also an enthusiastic performer and composer of verse in Greek and Latin, and his Latin poems have appeared in The Classical Outlook and Mouseion: Journal of the Classical Association of Canada.

Headshot for Eric PizaEric L. Piza is an Associate Professor at John Jay College of Criminal Justice, City University of New York. Dr. Piza is involved in a number of applied research projects focusing on the spatial analysis of crime patterns, problem-oriented policing, crime control technology, and the integration of academic research and police practice. He has published over 50 peer-reviewed journal articles and secured over $$2.4 million in outside research grants, including awards from the National Institute of Justice, Bureau of Justice Assistance, Swedish National Council on Crime Prevention, and Charles Koch Foundation. Before entering academia, he served as the GIS Specialist of the Newark, NJ Police Department, responsible for the day-to-day crime analysis and program evaluation activities of the agency. He received his PhD from Rutgers University, School of Criminal Justice.

Headshot for Tanya PollardTanya Pollard is Professor of English at Brooklyn College and The Graduate Center, and Chair of the Council of Scholars at Theater for a New Audience. Her research focuses on early modern theater, bodies, and audiences. Her most recent books are Reader in Tragedy, co-edited with Marcus Nevitt (2019), and Greek Tragic Women on Shakespearean Stages (2017), which won the Roland H. Bainton Book Prize in early modern literature. Earlier books include Milton, Drama, and Greek Texts, co-edited with Tania Demetriou (2016); Shakespearean Sensations: Experiencing Literature in Early Modern England, co-edited with Katharine Craik (2013); Drugs and Theater in Early Modern England (2005), and Shakespeare’s Theater: A Sourcebook (2003). A former Rhodes Scholar, she has received awards from the NEH, Whiting, and Mellon foundations, and the Warburg Institute. She is currently editing Ben Jonson’s The Alchemist for Arden Early Modern Drama, working with theater productions in New York, and writing about the contributions of early modern actors to the plays of Shakespeare and his contemporaries.

Headshot for Jama SheltonJama Shelton is an Associate Professor at the Silberman School of Social Work, Hunter College, and Chief Research Officer for True Colors United, a national organization working to address LGBTQ youth homelessness through public education, legislative advocacy, and local systems change. Dr. Shelton’s research focuses on LGBTQ youth homelessness, with specific attention on transgender and gender expansive youth. They are particularly interested in the ways in which systems rooted in cisnormativity limit service access and constrain successful exits from homelessness for transgender youth. Most recently, Dr. Shelton led a group of LGBTQ youth with lived experiences of homelessness in the development of a national LGBTQ youth homelessness research agenda. Dr. Shelton is also the Associate Director of the Silberman Center for Sexuality and Gender, where they work to advance sex positive social work practice and moving beyond the gender binary in social work education and practice.

Headshot for Lotti SilberIrina Carlota (Lotti) Silber is Professor and Chair of the Department of Anthropology, Gender Studies, and International Studies at the Colin Powell School, CCNY. She is also on the Doctoral Faculty in Anthropology at the CUNY Graduate Center. Her book Everyday Revolutionaries: Gender, Violence, and Disillusionment in Postwar El Salvador (Rutgers 2011) won the 2013 Mariposa Award from the International Latino Book Awards and was subsequently published in Spanish with UCA Editores in El Salvador (2018). Dr. Silber’s work spans ethnographic genres and she received a First Prize in Poetry from the Society for Humanistic Anthropology. She has two major projects underway. The first, Numbers and Bodies: Stories of El Salvador’s Postwar, under contract with Stanford University Press, explores the longue durée of El Salvador’s postwar through the lives and narratives of the 1.5 insurgent generation—the now adult children of the too-often-forgotten rank-and-file Salvadoran revolutionaries. The second project, Luminous: Children in Chronic Times, pursues her interest in embodied trauma through an ethnography of childhood genetic difference. Dr. Silber is co-chair of the University Seminar in Disability, Culture, and Society at Columbia University. Committed to public scholarship, she most recently provided an expert anthropological dictamen for the El Mozote Massacre case currently underway in El Salvador.

Headshot for Brett StoudtBrett G. Stoudt is an Associate Professor in the Psychology program at The Graduate Center, where he heads the PhD program in Critical Social/Personality and Environmental Psychology. Dr. Stoudt has worked on numerous participatory action research projects with community groups, lawyers, and policy-makers, both nationally and internationally. His interests include the social psychology of privilege and oppression as well as the human impact of the criminal justice system. Dr. Stoudt’s work has been published in volumes such as Geographies of Privilege, as well as journals such as The Journal of Social Issues. He is the recipient of The Michele Alexander Early Career Award for Scholarship and Service from the Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues. He has also received the Haupert Humanitarian Award from Moravian College and, with his participatory collective, received the Truth to Power Award for Excellence in Collaborative Research from the Education Node of the Urban Research-Based Action Network. Dr. Stoudt is currently the Associate Director of the Public Science Project.  He is also actively involved with Communities United for Police Reform as a steering committee member.

Headshot for Mark UngarMark Ungar is Professor of Political Science at Brooklyn College and the GC, and of Criminal Justice at the GC. His publications include five books and about 40 articles on policing, human rights, and violence. He serves as an advisor on citizen security with the United Nations, Inter-American Development Bank, governments, and NGOs in Latin America. Current initiatives include helping draft arms control regulations with the Congress of Honduras; mapping out post-transition police reform with the political opposition in Venezuela and Nicaragua; helping build environmental police forces in the Amazon Basin; co-chairing an initiative by a gun control coalition against US arms exports; and chairing the academic branch of the International Network for Environmental Compliance and Enforcement (INECE). Grants and fellowships supporting his work have been from the Ford, Tinker, Tow, and Henkel Foundations; the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars; and the National Democratic Institute’s Latin American Political Leadership program, among others. He is an adjunct professor at the Universidad Nacional in Argentina and was the Dae Chang International Visiting Scholar at Michigan State University.

Headshot for Monica VarsanyiMonica Varsanyi is Professor of Geography and Executive Officer of the Earth and Environmental Sciences Program at the CUNY Graduate Center, and in the Political Science Department at John Jay College, CUNY. She is a scholar of migration, membership, and the state, with a specific focus on unauthorized immigration and immigration federalism in the United States. Her books include Taking Local Control: Immigration Policy Activism in U.S. Cities and States (Stanford University Press, 2010, edited volume) and Policing Immigrants: Local Law Enforcement on the Front Lines (with Doris Marie Provine, Scott Decker, and Paul Lewis; University of Chicago Press, 2016; winner of the “2018 Outstanding Book in Policing Award” by the American Society of Criminology). Her current research project, with Marie Provine, traces the evolution of immigration policies and the tensions of immigration federalism as they have played out in New Mexico and Arizona from the Territorial Period to the present.  She is also working on a project that explores the nativist roots of voter disenfranchisement in the United States. Her research has been funded by the National Science Foundation and National Endowment for the Humanities, and she serves on the Research Advisory Board of the Vera Institute of Justice in New York City.

Headshot for Bianca WilliamsBianca C. Williams (she/her) is an Associate Professor of Anthropology and Faculty Lead of the PublicsLab at CUNY Graduate Center. Williams is an ethnographer of race, gender, and emotion in higher education and organizing communities, with a focus on Black women’s affective lives. The investigative thread that binds Williams’ organizing, teaching, and research is the question “How do Black people develop strategies for enduring and resisting the effects of racism and sexism, while attempting to maintain emotional wellness?” She has written about Black women, travel, and happiness; radical honesty as pedagogy; white supremacy, anti-Blackness, and emotional labor in higher ed; and anxious writing. Williams is the author of the award-winning book The Pursuit of Happiness: Black Women, Diasporic Dreams, and the Politics of Emotional Transnationalism (Duke U 2018), and co-editor of the book Plantation Politics and Campus Rebellions: Power, Diversity, and the Emancipatory Struggle in Higher Education (SUNY 2021). Williams received the 2016 AAA & Oxford University Press Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching of Anthropology, and the Mellon/ACLS Scholars and Society Fellowship Award in 2021. She is currently the inaugural Scholar-in-Residence at Well-Read Black Girl.