Faculty

Our faculty in critical theory and the arts are selected with care on the following bases: (1) foundational and fresh expertise in the course topic, whether theoretical and/or artistic; (2) demonstrated experience teaching students who lack prior knowledge of topics with structure and clarity; (3) an ability to orchestrate in-class student questions, answers, and discussion; and, (4) the capacity to supervise final student projects, whether academic/written or artistic/creative.  

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Lawrence Abu Hamdan is a 'private ear' and artist interested in the relation between sound and politics. His audio investigations have been used as evidence at the UK Asylum and Immigration Tribunal and political advocacy with Forensic Architecture. He was awarded the 2019 Turner Prize.

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Padmini Chettur began her contemporary dance career in 1990 with Chandralekha. She has since developed a distinct dancerly idiom: minimally differential, through movement in time, prioritizing structural tension over personal feeling. She's currently making Philosophical Exploration II.

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Nadia Bou Ali is Associate Professor and Director of the Civilization Studies Program at the American University of Beirut, Lebanon. She is the author of Hall of Mirrors: Psychoanalysis and the Love of Arabic (Edinburgh University Press, 2020). Nadia is also a member of The Lacan School, Bay Area, San Francisco.

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Ray Brassier is Professor of Philosophy at the American University of Beirut, Lebanon. He co-edited Alain Badiou's Theoretical Writings with Alberto Toscano. He is the translator of Badiou's St. Paul: The Foundation of Universalism and Quentin Meillassoux's After Finitude.

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Joan Copjec is a psychoanalytic theorist, feminist, and Professor of Modern Media and Culture at Brown University. She was executive editor of the Lacanian journal, Umbr(a) and is the author of Read My Desire (1994); Imagine There's No Woman (2002); and Cloud: Between Paris and Tehran (forthcoming).

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Rohini Devasher trained as a painter and printmaker and also works with video and site-specific drawings. Her research practice brings together early scientific instruments and contemporary ways of seeing to interrogate twin aspects of the Earth’s skies: celestial constants and mutable atmospheric objects. 

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Faisal Devji is Professor of Indian History at St. Antony’s College, University of Oxford. He is interested in Indian political thought, modern Islam, and his broader concerns have to do with ethics and violence in a globalized world. His latest book is Muslim Zion: Pakistan as a Political Idea.

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Rohit Goel co-edited Lacan contra Foucault: Subjectivity, Sex, Politics and has taught courses in philosophy, critical theory, historiography, and politics at the University of Chicago, Sciences Po Paris, the American University of Beirut, and Jnanapravaha Mumbai.

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Bijoy Jain founded Studio Mumbai in 1995. His studio is a collective of architects, engineers, artisans, and artists between India, Japan and Europe. He teaches at the Academia of Architecctura; his work has been exhibited in galleries around the world and is in the collections of MOMA SF and Centre Pompidou.

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Holger Jetter trained in violin at Salzburg’s Mozarteum. He co-founded the ‘Modern String Quartet’ (Munich) and has played with renowned musicians, including Mercedes Sosa, Joan Baez, Charlie Mariano, and Konstantin Wecker. He has lived and worked in Auroville for 25 years, now improvising contemporary sounds.

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Kevin Jones founded Juniper Mind and is an independent arts writer based in Dubai. New York-born and Paris-bred, he has lived in the Middle East for the past 13 years and is currently the UAE Desk Editor for ArtAsiaPacific. He has contributed to Art Newspaper, Artforum.com, ArtReviewAsia and FlashArt International.

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Pravin Kannanur works in theater and the visual arts. He is a founding member of the theater company, Magic Lantern. In 2011, he co-founded Basement 21, a collective focused on process within contemporary practice through pedagogy, performance, and the creation of new contexts for young artists.

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Pallavi Paul is an artist and film scholar. Her practice interrogates how ‘truth’ is produced and argued in public life, paying mind to the tension between documents and their aesthetic utterance that gets repressed in contemporary productions of ‘the documentary’. Her film, The Blind Rabbit, recently premiered at Rotterdam.

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Frank Ruda is Senior Lecturer in Philosophy & Professor at the European Graduate School. His publications include: Reading Hegel (with Agon Hamza & Slavoj Žižek) (Polity Press, forthcoming in 2022); The Dash – The Other Side of Absolute Knowing, with Rebecca Comay; Reading Marx, with Agon Hamza & Slavoj Žižek.

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Raqs Media Collective was founded by Monica Narula, Shuddha Sengupta, and Jeebesh Bagchi in 1992. Conjuring figures of cognitive and sensory acuteness, their work reconfigures perceptional fields and demands that everyone looks at what they take for granted, anew. They're presently working on toxicity and friendship.

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Walid Sadek is an artist and writer. He is Associate Professor of Studio Art and Chair of the Department of Fine Arts and Art History at the American University of Beirut. His current work, The Ruin to Come, proposes a theory and poetics for a post-war society disinclined to resume normative living.

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Aveek Sen was a writer, teacher, and collaborator whose work brought together literature, the visual arts, music, cinema, and everyday life, most recently in Art & Life: 21 Essays. He was associate editor of The Telegraph and had written with artists such as Dayanita Singh, Simryn Gill, Bharti Kher, Subodh Gupta, and On Kawara.

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Maarten Visser is a saxophonist and composer living in Chennai. He works with MV3, a trio playing improvised music, and composes for oto.3, which relates sound structures to the practice of improvisation. He is a co-founder of Basement 21 and has scored contemporary dance and film projects for years.

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Ala Younis is a research-based artist and curator based in Amman. She initiates journeys in archives, animating collective experiences that have collapsed into the personal. Her practice is based on found material, and on creating materials when they cannot be found or when they do not exist.