Decolonial Thinking & Postcolonial Studies

Much of the work in our department is animated by the problem of thinking about, through, and beyond the colonial. We focus particularly on Europe, Africa, and the Americas – including histories of U.S. empire – and bring together critical theory, literary and cultural studies, political philosophy, linguistics, history and anthropology. We are committed to engaging with diverse historical periods – from the Renaissance and Enlightenment to contemporary political and cultural movements – and to bridging national and linguistic boundaries in the process. Our faculty have played critical roles in defining the debates and terrain of Decolonial Thinking and Postcolonial Studies, and welcome graduate students interested in pursuing a range of projects in this area.

Walter Mignolo, William H. Wannamaker Professor of Romance Studies in Trinity College of Arts and Sciences

Office: 125B Friedl Building, Box 90670, Durham, NC 27708

Phone: (919) 668-1949


Mignolo’s research and teaching have been devoted, in the past 30 years, to understanding and unraveling the historical foundation of the modern/colonial world system and imaginary since 1500. In...

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Claudia Milian, Associate Professor in the Department of Romance Studies

Office: 217C Language Ctr, Durham, NC 27708

Phone: (919) 660-3127

Claudia Milian, a scholar of Latino/a Studies, works in comparative and interdisciplinary studies and forges intersections among the vast intellectual traditions of Latina/o Studies, Latin American Studies, African American Studies, southern studies, and hemispheric American Studies. Her areas...

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Richard Rosa, Associate Professor of Romance Studies

Office: 205 Language Center, Durham, NC 27708

Phone: (919) 660-3100

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Antonio Viego, Associate Professor of Literature

Office: Program In Literature/101 Ernestine Friedl Building, East Campus/box 90670, Durham, NC 27708-0670

Phone: (919) 668-2687

Latino Studies; Ethnic Studies; Queer/Lesbian/Gay Studies; Twentieth Century American Literatures; Critical Race Theory; Chicana Feminist Theory; Comparative Ethnicities; Lacanian Psychoanalytic Theory Full Profile »

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Esther Leah Gabara, E. Blake Byrne Associate Professor of Romance Studies

Office: 212 Language Center, Department of Romance Studies, Durham, NC 27708-0257

Phone: (919) 660-3100

Esther Gabara works with art, literature, and visual culture from modern and contemporary Latin America. Central issues in her research are the relationship between ethics and aesthetics, theories and practices of non-mainstream modernisms, and representations of race and gender. Her...

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Deborah Jenson, Professor of Romance Studies

Office: 112 Language Center, Box 90257, Durham, NC 27708

Phone: (919) 668-0337

As the Director of the Franklin Humanities Institute I work with faculty and students in 18 departments and programs in the humanities, arts, and interpretive social sciences to work toward a vibrant future of humanities contributions to the Duke mandate of "Knowledge in the Service of Society."... Full Profile »

Michele Longino, Professor of Romance Studies

Office: 111 Language Center, Durham, NC 27708-0257

Phone: (919) 660-3121

Professor of French & Italian Studies, received her Ph.D. from the University of Michigan, and taught at Rice University before coming to Duke in 1989.  She is an early modern specialist on the French Classical age, 1650-1700. Her interests in the epistolary genre and in women's writing...

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