The Interdisciplinary Faculty Seminars harness the intellectual energies of the Wake Forest humanities and arts faculty to promote and support interdisciplinary collaboration and research that represents the leading edge of humanities scholarship and creates exciting bridges between different disciplines and units within the University. These groups, which meet regularly over the course of a semester or academic year, receive modest project funds and participate in the annual Faculty Seminars Symposium that the Humanities Institute hosts every spring.

Current Seminars


Language, Theory, and Artificial Intelligence

Convener: Ryan Shirey (English/Writing)

In a moment where large language models and generative artificial intelligence seemed poised to reshape, or perhaps even to trouble our understanding of human creative and critical processes, this seminar will investigate the intersections of philosophy, ethics, writing, language, and creativity with regard to emergent digital technologies that seek to emulate forms of human linguistic expression.

The Promises & Perils of Late Capitalism

Convener: Sara Dahill-Brown (Politics & International Affairs)

Capitalism as an idea and a system promises a great deal, yet episodic and ongoing crises make clear that its excesses and shortcomings immiserate and imperil many. Participants in this seminar will study and discuss works that attempt to grapple with capitalism’s striking tenacity in the face of its contradictions.

Genocide and Memory Studies

Convener(s): Barry Trachtenberg (History/Jewish Studies) & Lisa Blee (History/Cultural Heritage & Preservation Studies)

This seminar will provide an opportunity to engage with a series of current academic and public debates within the realm of genocide and memory studies. Among these are recent conversations in the United States over memorials to white supremacy and slavery; current controversies in Germany over challenges to its Holocaust memorial culture and the comparative lack of commemoration to Germany’s colonial past; and debates in formerly colonized societies and settler states over ways to contend with the legacies of imperialism and ongoing structures of colonization.

Centering Indigenous and Decolonial Scholarship Across the Humanities

Convener(s): Jessica MacLellan (Anthropology), J. Moisés García-Rentería (English), & Julie Velásquez Runk (Environment & Sustainability)

Colonialism and coloniality throughout the Americas gives Indigenous authors and filmmakers shared histories from which to create their works. One result is the flowering of Indigenous scholarship. In this era of late capitalism and environmental crises, many Native American and Indigenous scholars provide alternative responses to crises by drawing from their peoples and cultivating Indigenous resurgence. Better understanding of these works is critical for our research and teaching as we work to diversify and decolonize our syllabi.

Past Seminars

Workshop Seminars