23 Duke Academics Join Michael Klien’s 11th Organ I: A Symposium

About 11th Organ I: A Symposium

In this world premiere of 11th Organ I: A Symposium, Kliën is working to build a matrix of collective thought – merging leading individual academics into an oracle that can map a path towards an equitable, sustainable future.

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Akhil Sharma

Adele Schiff Professor of the Practice of English

Akhil Sharma is the author of the novels FAMILY LIFE and AN OBEDIENT FATHER. His short stories have appeared in The New Yorker, The Atlantic, and The Paris Review. Read full bio here.


Anne-Gaelle Saliot

Associate Professor of Romance Studies

Professor Saliot’s research explores translations and migrations of cultural objects across epochs, and across geographical and linguistic frontiers. Read full bio here.


Ara Wilson

Associate Professor of Gender, Sexuality & Feminist Studies

Ara Wilson has spent a lot of time thinking about how to link understandings of economies (especially capitalism) with analyses of gender and sexuality, naming this effort queer political economy (QPE). Read full bio here.


Barbara Dickinson

Professor of the Practice Emerita of Dance and 11th Organ Research Group Member

Barbara Dickinson served as Dance Program Director for eighteen years, overseeing faculty growth, guiding the focus of a greatly expanded curriculum and establishing a major in dance. Read full bio here.


Corina Stan

Associate Professor of English

Trained as a comparatist, Corina Stan works at the intersection of literature and the arts, with interests in continental philosophy and the sociology of intellectuals. Read full bio here.


Daniel W. McShea

Professor of Biology

Daniel W. McShea’s main research interest is hierarchy theory, especially the causal relationship between higher-level wholes and their components (Spencer, Simon, Campbell, Salthe, Wimsatt). Read full bio here.


David Benjamin Landes

Associate Professor of the Practice, Thompson Writing Program and 11th Organ Research Group Member

David Benjamin Landes’ multidisciplinary scholarship in communication draws upon the fields of rhetoric, media, cultural studies, performance studies, and musicology. Read full bio here.


David M. Malone

Professor of the Practice of Education and 11th Organ Research Group Member

Educational psychology, school psychology, student-centered approaches to teaching and learning, experiential and service-learning, innovative educational approaches in higher education. Read full bio here.


David Toole

Director of the Kenan Institute for Ethics and Associate Professor of the Practice of Theology, Ethics, and Global Health

David Toole’s current research centers on the role of mission hospitals in African health systems, with a particular focus on the countries of the Nile River Basin in eastern Africa. Read full bio here.



Eileen Chengyin Chow

Associate Professor of the Practice of Asian and Middle Eastern Studies

Eileen’s teaching and research interests revolve around storytelling, including literature, film and visual studies, popular culture (anime/manga, fandoms, media technologies), diaspora studies, and the history and cultures of Chinatowns around the world. Read full bio here.


Erika Weiberg

Assistant Professor of Classical Studies

Dr. Erika L. Weiberg researches and teaches Greek language and literature, with a focus on Greek poetry, gender and sexuality, and theory and reception. Read full bio here.


Felwine Sarr

Anne-Marie Bryan Distinguished Professor of French and Francophone Studies

Felwine Sarr’s academic writings focus on the ecology of knowledges, contemporary African philosophy, political economics, and the history of religious ideas. Read full bio here.


Gustavo M. Silva

Assistant Professor of Biology

The Silva lab investigates the underlying mechanisms by which gene expression is regulated at the transcriptional and translational levels in response to stress. Read full bio here.


Jingqiu Guan

Assistant Professor of the Practice of Dance

Centering voices and expressions of women, immigrants, people of color, as well as people of disabilities, Jingqiu Guan’s works engage with the exploration of cultural identities, motherhood, and address issues of racial justice and disability justice. Read full bio here.


Johann Montozzi-Wood

Assistant Professor of the Practice of Theater Studies and 11th Organ Research Group Member

After graduating with a BFA in Musical Theatre, Johann (he/they) has performed over a decade in regional theaters, dance companies, amusement parks, and cruise lines around the world. Read full bio here.


Joseph Richard Winters II

Alexander F. Hehmeyer Associate Professor of Religious Studies and African and African American Studies

Joseph Winters’ project expands conventional understandings of black religiosity and black piety by drawing on resources from Af-Am literature, philosophy, and critical theory. His research examines how literature, film, and music (especially hip hop) can reconfigure our sense of the sacred and imagination of spirituality. Read full bio here.


Kay Jowers

Director for Just Environments at Duke University’s Nicholas Institute for Energy, Environment & Sustainability and the Kenan Institute for Ethics

Kay Jowers’ work focuses on analyzing state regulatory and policy approaches to addressing environmental issues and engages with environmental equity, ethics, and justice in particular. She co-directs the Environmental Justice Lab, a collaboration with the Duke Economics Department. Read full bio here.


Leah Torrey

Director for Special Initiatives at Duke Chapel

As director of special Initiatives, the Rev. Leah Torrey is responsible for the design and implementation of programs that center storytelling and wrestling with questions that ask members of the Duke community: who have you been, who are you now, who do you hope to be? Read full bio here.


M. Ronen Plesser

Professor of Physics

M Ronen Plesser’s research is in String Theory, the most ambitious attempt yet at a comprehensive theory of the fundamental structure of the universe. Read full bio here.


Marcia Rego

Associate Professor of the Practice, Thompson Writing Program

Marcia Rego is interested in the ethnography of language—written, spoken or otherwise performed—and has focused her research on the Cape Verdean Creole. Read full bio here.


Negar Mottahedeh

Professor of Literature

Negar Mottahedeh is a cultural critic and theorist specializing in interdisciplinary and feminist contributions to the fields of Middle Eastern Studies and Film and Media Studies. Read full bio here.


Taylor Black

Assistant Professor of English
Taylor Black has published on twentieth-century American literature, popular music, gender and sexuality studies, queer theory, ontology and theories of becoming and, above all, the subject and practices of style in Women’s Studies Quarterly, American Quarterly, Discourse and the Journal of Popular Music Studies. Read full bio here.


Quran Karriem

Postdoctoral Research Fellow

Quran Karriem is an experimental musician, media artist and theorist working primarily with electronic and algorithmic media.  His research is concerned with human improvisation and automated decision, particularly insofar as they reproduce sovereign power and racial hierarchy through semi-autonomous knowledge systems. Read full bio here.



With support from the 11th Organ Research Group

Alexander Strecker

PhD Candidate, Art, Art History & Visual Studies 

Alexander Strecker is pursuing a PhD in Art, Art History and Visual Studies. His dissertation project, tentatively titled “Athens in Pieces: Toward a Reparative Art History,” uses a reparative framework to think about the effervescence of visual culture in the Greek capital since 2008. Read full bio here.


Julia Piper


Julia Piper is an intersectional environmentalist and researches the connections between art-making and ecological awareness. She is an intersectional environmentalist and researches the connections between art-making and ecological awareness.


Kate Alexandrite

PhD Candidate, Computational Media, Arts & Cultures

Kate Alexandrite is an artist and theorist currently working toward a doctorate in Duke University’s interdisciplinary Computational Media, Arts & Cultures program. Alexandrite collaborates with choreographers, dancers and composer in multimedia installations and performances towards researching algorithmic processes as emergent in social being.


Lightsey Darst

Poet, Program Director for the Arts and Humanities, Trinity College

Lightsey Darst is a poet, an arts writer, and a development strategist. Her fourth book of poetry, The Heiress/Ghost Acres (Coffee House Press, 2023) works towards an ethical mothering in America against political strife, pandemic, and the underlying injustices of racism and sexism. Read full bio here.


Marika Niko


Marika Niko is interested in using choreography as a tool to imagine, rehearse, and experience alternative forms of social organization. As a choreographer, curator, facilitator, and community-organizer, she creates situations that weave different relationships among humans, non-humans, space, and time. Read full bio here.


Simone Barros


Simone Barros creates films, plays, soundscapes and installations which breach the boundaries of solipsism to embark upon a symbiosis between the self and the other, between the personal unconscious and the collective unconscious to shatter these superficial binaries. Read full bio here.

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