Robert Hullot-Kentor

Chair, Department of Critical Theory and the Arts, Master of Arts degree program, School of Visual Arts; philosopher

RHK photo

Education: BA, Marlboro College; MA, Goddard College; University of Iowa, Iowa Writers Workshop; University of Freiburg, philosophy; Sorbonne, literature; PhD, University of Massachusetts

Books include: author, Things Beyond Resemblance: Collected Essays on Theodor W. Adorno; Ice Flow: Essay and Commentary on David Salle; Terra Infirma: The House that Mowry Baden Built; editor, T.W. Adorno, Current of Music: Elements of a Radio Theory; editor, translator, T.W. Adorno, Philosophy of New Music; Aesthetic Theory; Kierkegaard: Construction of the Aesthetic

Awards and honors include: DAAD; Orion Visiting Artist, University of Victoria; J. Paul Getty Resident Scholar; J. Paul Getty External Scholar; Mellon Faculty Fellow, Harvard University; Mellon Faculty Fellow, University Professors Program, Boston University

Antonio Y. Vázquez-Arroyo

political scientist

Antonio photo

Education: BA, Universidad de Puerto Rico, Río Piedras; PhD, University of Massachusetts, Amherst

Conference presentations include: “Power, Freedom, and Political Forms,” Freedom andDemocracy in an Imperial Context: Dialogues with James Tully, University of Victoria; “Unseen Catastrophes: Capitalism and Colonialism as Non-Events,” Political Theory Seminar, The New School forSocial Research; La dialéctica de la catástrofe y la “catástrofización” de la política,” Rutas de Poder, Universidad de los Andes

Books include: Political Responsibility: Responding to Predicaments of Power 

Publications include: Telos, Political Theory, Theory & Event, Polity, New Political Science, Radical Philosophy, Antropolítica

Bettina Funcke

writer, editor; co-founder, The Leopard Press


Education: M.Phil, PhD, summa cum laude, Hochschule für Gestaltung in Karlsruhe; Whitney Independent Studies Program, New York

Professional experience includes: Head of Publications, dOCUMENTA (13); senior editor, Parkett; associate editor, Dia Art Foundation

Books include: author, Wade GuytonPop or Populus: Art Between High and Low; contributor, Elad Lassry; Richard Phillips; Gerard Byrne; T.J. Wilcox; Sarah Morris: Bye Bye Brazil; Robert Whitman: Local Report; Guyton/Walker; editor, 100 Notes — 100 Thoughts; Seth Price: Drawings; Seth Price: Folklore U.S.; Dia’s Andy; Joan Jonas: The Shape, the Scent, the Feel of Things; Thomas Schütte: Scenewright; Gloria in Memoria; In Medias Res; coeditor, Francis Alÿs: Fabiola; The Lightning Field; Robert Smithson: Spiral Jetty; Robert Lehman Lectures on Contemporary Art

Publications include: Mousse, Speculations, Artforum, Bookforum, Texte zur Kunst, Printed Project, Afterall, Continuous Project, Public

Awards and honors include: Rubenstein Fellowship, Whitney Museum of American Art; residencies include: Centre National de l’Estampe et de l’Art Imprimé; Le Couvent des Récollets; Kolleg Friedrich Nietzsche

Alhelí de María Alvarado-Díaz

intellectual historian

Alheli photo

Education: BA, The John Hopkins University; MA, M.Phil., PhD, Columbia University

Professional experience includes: founder, organizer, Theory and Practice: Political Philosophy, Radical Politics and Social Resistance (postdoctoral research and writing group), Heyman Center for the Humanities, Columbia University; creator, Shooting the Core: Reinterpreting Political Theory through Film, Documentary and Reportage, Columbia University

Conference presentations include: “Rosa’s Afterlives: Revolutionary Legacies in Theory and Practice,” Rosa Luxemburg Stiftung; “Castrating Mothers, Insubordinate Daughters: A Feminist Reading of Peter Mullan’s The Magdalene Sisters,” Seventh Global Meeting of the Interdisciplinary Network, Dubrovnik, Croatia; “Curing Contradiction in the Age of Affluence: Marcuse’s Perscriptions for the Liberation of the Self,” Columbia University Libraries; “Keep Calm and Carry On: Marcus Aurelius’ Ancient Cures for Modern Ailments,” The Association for Core Texts and Courses Annual Conference, Los Angeles, CA; “Clastres, Abensour, Negri and Rancière: A Major Polyphony in Radical Philosophy,” Terceras Jornadas del Archivo General de la Nación, Montevideo, Uruguay

Fellowships and awards include: Provost’s Hybrid Learning Grant, Heyman Center Postdoctoral Working Series Grant, Columbia University; Postdoctoral Lectureship in Contemporary Civilization, Dissertation Writing Fellowship, Columbia University; Sciences Po-Paris Doctoral Exchange Fellow, Phi Beta Kappa Fellow

Nicole Wittenberg



Education: BFA, San Francisco Art Institute

One-Person Exhibitions: “The Malingerers,” Freight + Volume Gallery; “Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow,” Galerie Lisa Kandlhofer, Vienna

Group Exhibitions: “Visionary Painting: curated by alex katz,” Colby College Museum; “The Female Gaze, Part Two: Women Look at Men,” Cheim Read Gallery; “Mi Casa, Tu Casa,” Johannes Vogt Gallery; “Nice Weather” Skarstedt Gallery

Public Collections: Boston Museum of Fine Art, Farnsworth Art Museum, High Museum of Art, Portland Museum of Art, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum

Awards: John Koch Award in Art, American Academy of Arts and Letters

Christoph Hesse

media scholar

Education: MA, PhD, Ruhr University Bochum (Germany)

Professional experience includes: Research Associate at the Institute for Media and Communication Studies of the Free University of Berlin; Editorial board of the Journal for Critical Social Theory and Philosophy, Berlin—Boston, MA: De Gruyter

Academic research includes: Edition of the Correspondence Between Hermann Borchardt and George Grosz, Free University of Berlin, Germany (funded by the Hamburg Foundation for the Advancement of Research and Culture); German-Speaking Film Emigrés in Soviet Exile in the 1930s-40s, Free University of Berlin, Germany (funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG)); Edition of Letters to Bertolt Brecht in Exile, 1933–1949, Free University of Berlin, Germany (funded by the Hamburg Foundation for the Advancement of Research and Culture)

Sebastian Traenkle


Education: MA, Leipzig University, PhD, Philosophy, Free University of Berlin, in progress

Academic experience includes: Visiting Scholar at the Department of History (Prof. Martin Jay), University of California, Berkeley

Publications include: “Die Vernunft und ihre Umwege. Zur Rettung der Rhetorik bei Hans Blumenberg und Theodor W. Adorno” in Michael Heidgen, Matthias Koch, Christian Köhler (Eds.), Permanentes Provisorium. Hans Blumenbergs Umwege Paderborn: Wilhelm Fink; “Ideologiekritik und Metaphorologie. Elemente einer philosophischen Sprachkritik bei Adorno und Blumenberg” in: Philip Hogh, Stefan Deines, Julia Christ (Eds.), Sprache und kritische Theorie, Frankfurt a. M. & New York: Campus; “Polizeisoldat des Himmels. Über revolutionäre Moral und die Negation des individuellen Glücksanspruchs” in Hendrik Wallt (Ed.), Gewalt und Moral. Eine Diskussion der Dialektik der Befreiung Münster: Unrast

Awards and honors include: Doctoral Scholarship of the Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst (German Academic Exchange Service), Dissertation Scholarship of the Hans-Böckler-Foundation

Brian Kloppenberg

psychoanalyst; Fellow, International Psychoanalytic Association

Brian Kloppenberg

Education: BA, with distinction, Swarthmore College; MFA, The Ohio State University; National Psychological Association for Psychoanalysis; Institute for Psychoanalytic Training and Research (IPTAR)

Professional experience includes: former Director, Theodore Reik Clinical Center; former Dean of Training, National Psychological Association for Psychoanalysis

Other professional experience includes: Modern dance choreographer, performer, teacher; founder, Kloppenberg Dance

Publications include: Psychoanalytic Psychology

Conference presentations include: Paper on Hans Loewald, Heidegger and Irigaray, Hans Loewald Conference, The New School

Jeremy Cohan (Graduate Associate)

sociologist; director of admissions committee for Critical Theory and the Arts, 2017-2018

Education: BA, with honors, University of Chicago; Teaching Certification, Middle Childhood, Pace University; PhD, Sociology, New York University, in progress

Conference presentations include: “Lukacs’ Abyss,” Institute of Culture and Society, University of Illinois at Chicago; “Foucault’s Detours,” Cultural Studies Association Annual Convention; “Lukacs: Professor or Politician?,” Leftforum Conference; “Why We Should Care about Class,” Economic and Political Sociology Workshop, New York University; “What Marx Really Thought About Class,” Marx and Philosophy Society Annual Conference, Institute of Education, University of London

Awards and honors include: Henry MacCracken Fellowship, New York University; John Billing Fiske Poetry Prize, University of Chicago

Joshua Pineda (Graduate Associate)


Education: BA, with honors, University of Toronto; MA, New School University; PhD, Philosophy, The New School, in progress

Conference presentations include:“On Concepts and the Political: Towards a Marxist Political Theory,” Politics at the Limits of Civil Society: A Political Philosophy Conference, University of Guelph, Ontario; “Class Struggle in the First French Republic?” Society for Phenomenology and Existential Philosophy, Rochester, NY; “Civic Republicanism and Class Struggle: On Politics and Historical Method,” Democracy and the Market: Shifting Balances, Shifting Perspectives, Institute of Philosophy, Katholieke Universiteit, Leuven, Belgium; “Marx and Foucault’s Critique of the State,” Villanova University, Philadelphia; “From Rational Theology to Scientific Thought: Sense, the Organism and the Natural World in the Work of Sigmund Freud,” Breaking Out of Subjectivity: Contemporary Challenges in the Study of Religion, Centre for Research on Religion, McGill University, Montreal

Associated Faculty

Most years, the Program in Critical Theory and the Arts welcomes visiting scholars and faculty in the arts, sociology, social theory, or philosophy

Frances Fox Piven

sociologist, activist

Post-election curricular advisor. Professor Fox Piven has been among the most incisive, humane and engaged voices on the left for decades in the struggle for voter rights, welfare rights, working people’s rights, and social reform. She is the co-founder of the National Welfare Rights Organization and the author of Challenging Authority: How Ordinary People Change America, The War at Home, and Labor Parties in Postindustrial Societies. Her many other books include Poor People’s Movements, Regulating the Poor, The Breaking of the American Social Compact, Why Americans Don’t Vote, and Why Americans Still Don’t Vote, co-authored with Richard Cloward.

Apollinaire Scherr

dance critic

Visiting lecturer, 2016-2017. Apollinaire Scherr has written on the performing arts in New York City for the New York Times, the New Yorker, the Village Voice, The Atlantic and Fjord Review, and is a frequent contributor of dance criticism to the Financial Times.

Imri Talgam


Pianist in residence, 2015-2016. Imri Talgam’s performances of contemporary music with various ensembles, including Ensemble Modern, Axiom ensemble and the Israeli Contemporary players have brought him into close contact with figures such as Pierre Boulez, Peter Eötvös, Helmut Lachenmann and N.A. Huber. Festival appearances include the Lucerne Festival, Gaudeamus Muziekweek, Mänttä music festival as well as Lincoln center’s annual FOCUS festival. A versatile performer of both contemporary as well as traditional repertoire, Imri Talgam has played throughout the world, including Finland, Germany, France, Spain, Belgium, Holland, Britain, Mexico and the U.S. Recent appearances include venues such as Theater des Bouffes du Nord, Salle Pleyel, KKL Lucerne, Alice Tully hall and Kiev’s Ukraine hall, both as soloist and in collaboration with ensembles and chamber groups. In Israel he has appeared as soloist with several major orchestras, such as the Haifa symphony orchestra and the ISO.

Advisory Panels

Advisory Panel to the “The Situation of the Arts”

“The Situation of the Arts” is a year-long seminar in which students engage established as well as newly-emerging artists in conversation with the aim of understanding what artists today are immediately contending with in their working lives.

The distinguished seven-member Advisory Panel to “The Situation of the Arts” provide yearly recommendations that help the seminar locate important, provocative and interesting young artists, scholars and critics. The director of the seminar, in collaboration with the department faculty and chair, research these recommendations and make a selection of guests who are invited to join the seminar in the course of the year.

Iria Candela, a scholar of modern and contemporary Latin American art, is the Estrellita B. Brodsky Curator of Latin American Art at The Metropolitan Museum of Art. She was formerly the Curator of International Art at Tate Modern. Candela is the author of Art in Latin America, a study of the major contemporary art-works and artists to emerge from that region since 1990.

Lynne Cooke, art scholar, is the Senior Curator of Special Projects in Modern Art, National Gallery of Art, Washington DC. Previous positions held by Cooke include Deputy Director and Chief Curator at the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia, Madrid, and Curator of the Dia Art Foundation, New York. In addition to her curatorial work and projects, Cooke has written exhibition catalogues on the works of William Kentridge, Willem de Kooning, Agnes Martin, Richard Serra, and others.

Wade Guyton is an artist who makes paintings, drawings, photographs and sculptures. He is known for his particular approach to the materials his works involve, which in part relies on stymieing digital technologies. Guyton’s work has been shown at the Whitney Museum of American Art, MoMA PS1, and the Venice Biennale. He is represented in New York by Friedrich Petzel Gallery.

Marta Kuzma is the incoming Dean of the Yale School of Art, the first woman ever to hold the position. She was formerly the Vice Chancellor of the Royal Institute of Art, and before that, held positions directing programs for the International Center of Photography and the Soros Center of Contemporary Art.

Peter Osborne is Professor of Modern European Philosophy at Kingston University, London. He is the author of Anywhere or Not at All: The Philosophy of Contemporary Art (Verso). Prof. Osborne’s research interests include the philosophy of art and cultural theory, specifically, the conceptual basis of global comparativism and the historical ontology of contemporary art.

Laura Owens, a painter, studied at the Rhode Island School of Design and the California Institute of the Arts. She lives and works in Los Angeles, where she established and continues to participate in the exhibition space 356 S. Mission Road. Her work is included in the collections of the Museum of Contemporary Art, the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Guggenheim Museum, among many other major art institutions.

Richard Shiff is the Director of the Center for the Study of Modernism at The University of Texas at Austin, where he also holds the position of Effie Marie Cain Regents Chair in Art. He is the author of several important works on the study of modern and contemporary art, among them Cézanne and the End of Impressionism, (co-author) Barnett Newman: A Catalogue Raisonné, Doubt: Theories of Modernism and Postmodernism in the Visual Arts, and Between Sense and de Kooning.

Advisory Panel to “The Serious Times Lecture Series”

A yearlong seminar series in which students work together with a carefully chosen group of invited lecturers and discussants to engage critical problems of contemporary social reality.

The distinguished Advisory Panel to “The Serious Times Leture Series” provide yearly recommendations of individuals—whether scholars, critics, activist, or writers—whom they believe would make productive guests and interlocutors in a seminar series devoted broadly to the urgent realities of our times. The director of the seminar, in collaboration with the department faculty and chair, research these recommendations and make a selection of guests who are invited to join the seminar in the course of the year.

Dennis Altman is a prolific scholar and gay rights pioneer. He is a Professorial Fellow in Human Security at La Trobe University in Melborne, and the author of numerous texts on the relationship between politics and sexuality, including, most recently, Queer Wars: The New Global Polarization Over Gay Rights (2016), and his groundbreaking Homosexual: Oppression and Liberation (1972), which is widely regarded as the first serious scholarly contribution to the gay liberation movement.

Nancy Fraser is the Henry A. & Louise Loeb Professor of Political & Social Science at The New School for Social Research in New York City. Her writings and teaching concerns social and political theory, feminist theory, and contemporary French and German philosophy. Prof. Fraser is the author of Fortunes of Feminism: From State-Managed Capitalism to Neoliberal Crisis; Scales of Justice: Reimagining Political Space in a Globalizing World; Adding Insult to Injury: Nancy Fraser Debates Her Critics; and Mapping the Radical Imagination: Between Redistribution and Recognition.

Bill McKibben is a writer and environmental activist whose book, The End of Nature, is recognized as the first text on climate change to be published for a general readership. McKibben is the founder of 350.org, a progressive organization dedicated to raising awareness and building up a resistance to political and economic developments (e.g., the Keystone Pipeline) that would make a catastrophic environmental situation even worse. He is the Schumann Distinguished Scholar in Environmental Studies at Middlebury College, a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and a recipient of the Right Livelihood Prize.

Tom Porteous is the Deputy Program Director for Human Rights Watch. He has a background in classical studies, international journalism, diplomacy, and UN peacekeeping (including operations in Somalia and Liberia). He previously served as the London Director for Human Rights Watch, and prior to that, as Conflict Management Adviser for Africa in the UK’s Foreign Office.

Moishe Postone, historian, is the Thomas E. Donnelley Professor of the College, History, and the Center for Jewish Studies, Co-director of the Chicago Center for Contemporary Theory, and the Co-editor of the journal Critical Historical Studies at The University of Chicago. His research and teaching focus primarily on 19th- and 20th-century European intellectual history and critical social theory. His work has also considered the problematic of modern anti-Semitism and questions of history, memory, and identity in postwar Germany. Postone is the author of History and Heteronomy:Critical Essays and Time, Labor and Social Domination: A Reinterpretation of Marx’s Critical Theory.