Ivano Caponigro


Ivano Caponigro studies how different human languages convey meaning by assembling words to form sentences, working within the field of linguistics that is known as formal semantics and its interfaces with syntax and pragmatics. One of the aims of formal semantics, and Caponigro’s research, is to unveil the logic that is behind human languages and is part of the human mind. Caponigro has worked on a variety of languages including several Indo-European languages, Adyghe (spoken in Russia and Turkey), Mixtec (spoken in the Oaxaca region of Mexico), and American Sign Language.

Caponigro is working on a biography of Richard Montague (1930-1971), the brilliant American philosopher and logician who fathered formal semantics right before being murdered at age 40. The biography aims to bring together all the various aspects of Montague’s complex, fascinating, and mainly unknown life, both as a scholar and as a person, and to make his ideas accessible to a broader group of readers.

Gloria Elizabeth Chacon

Gloria Elizabeth Chacon


Gloria Chacon researches the Indigenous literatures of the Americas; Chicana/Latina literary and cultural movements; Central American poetics and politics; US Central Americans; Latin American literary and cultural theories.

She was also the 2014-2015 Hellman Fellowship Award Recipient.


Dominguez Rubio, F.

Fernando Domínguez Rubio


Although formally trained as a cultural sociologist, his work is remarkedly interdisciplinary, drawing from disciplines as diverse as science and technology studies, anthropology, art and architecture.

Fernando Domínguez Rubio’s work focuses on the study of the material ecologies and infrastructures enabling contemporary cultural, aesthetic, and political forms. If you want to know more, please check here: research projects, publications and working papers .

Kwai Ng

Kwai Ng


Kwai Ng is an associate professor of sociology at the University of California, San Diego. He is interested in the sociology of law. He has done empirical work on the bilingual legal system of Hong Kong, the use of court interpreters in the United States, and is currently working on a book manuscript about judges in China. His coauthored (with Xin He) book manuscript explores how the Chinese courts from an institutional perspective. Besides law, Ng’s other areas of research interests include culture, sociology of language, and social theory.

C. Rivera Garza

Cristina Rivera Garza


Cristina Rivera-Garza  is the award-winning author of six novels, three collections of short stories, five collections of poetry and three non-fiction books. Originally written in Spanish, these works have been translated into multiple languages, including English, French, Italian, Portuguese, and Korean. The recipient of the Roger Caillois Award for Latin American Literature (Paris, 2013); as well as the Anna Seghers (Berlin, 2005), she is the only author who has won the International Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz Prize twice, in 2001 for her novel Nadie me verá llorar  (translated into English by Andrew Hurley as No One Will See Me Cry ) and again in 2009 for her novel La muerte me da. She has translated, from English into Spanish, Notes on Conceptualisms by Vanessa Place and Robet Fitterman; and, from Spanish into English, “Nine Mexican Poets edited by Cristina Rivera Garza,” in New American Writing 31. She is currently the Director of the MFA Program in Creative Writing at the University of California, San Diego.

She was born in Mexico (Matamoros, Tamaulipas, 1964), and has lived in the United States since 1989. She studied urban sociology at the National Autonomous University of Mexico and received her PhD in Latin American history from the University of Houston. She has written extensively on the social history of mental illness in early twentieth-century Mexico, and published academic articles in journals and edited volumes in the United States, England, Argentina and Mexico. She received a Doctorate in Humane Letters Honoris Causa from the University of Houston in 2012.



Sarah Schneewind


Schneewind graduated from Columbia in 1999, taught at Southern Methodist University, and then came here in 2005.  She teaches East Asian History from 1200 BC to 1800 AD, but works on the Ming period (1368-1644).  Her publications include an accessible introduction to Ming and to the practice of history, A Tale of Two Melons: Emperor and Subject in Ming China, as well as a study of state-society relations as exemplified in the implementation of a policy of building community schools in Ming, an edited volume called Long Live the Emperor! Uses of the Ming Founder Across Six Centuries of East Asian History, and short studies including one on the Declaration of Independence.

Her current project is the first book-length study in any language of shrines to living officials, a common institution in imperial China.

Alena Williams

Alena Williams


Alena J. Williams is Assistant Professor in the Department of Visual Arts at the University of California, San Diego, where she teaches the history of modern and contemporary art, film, and media. Her research areas include the rhetoric of visual culture and the epistemology of the image. She is currently preparing a book-length study, The Total Experiment: Cinema and the Modernist Work of Art, on a contiguous set of objects—from multimedia installations and “expanded cinema” practices of the 1960s and 70s to the dynamic kinetic and light experiments of early modernism—which reflect cross-disciplinary ideas in the fields of modern art, film, and visual culture. Williams was the curator of Nancy Holt: Sightlines, an international traveling exhibition and publication on American artist Nancy Holt’s Land art, films, videos, and related works.