The Center for Humanistic Inquiry (CHI) at Amherst College seeks scholars from across the disciplines for full-time, two-year appointments as CHI Fellows. In colloquy with one another and the Amherst faculty, CHI Fellows will explore the theme of “Speech/Image/Spectacle.” We invite applications from scholars whose research takes up some aspect of our theme (described in more detail below) from a humanistic perspective. Our student body is broadly diverse with regard to race, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, gender, nationality, sexual orientation, and religion. The college is committed to enriching its educational experience and its culture through the diversity of its faculty, administration, and staff.  

Our theme, SPEECH/IMAGE/SPECTACLE, invites inquiry into the politics, aesthetics, technologies, genealogies, and epistemologies of contemporary public discourse. Over the course of two years we will explore the ways we generate, encode, and circulate meaning through representation, inquiring after the nature and effects of speech, image, and spectacle on the senses, on human subjectivity, and on politics and sociality. How should we understand shifting relations between speech (in the guise of words, languages, speech acts, free speech rights, and so on), performance, and spectacle, both now and historically?  Has speech now been spectacularized? What is the relation between spectacle and identity, authenticity, or truth? How do image and spectacle translate or channel power? How should we assess calls to regulate or repress publication and circulation of troubling speech and images, or conversely to expand their scale and reach?  What ways of perceiving and practicing politics does a spectacular society demand or allow? How does the very domain of representation change as the global circulation of text and image compresses space and recalibrates time? 

Fellows, who will have offices in the center, are expected to be in residence during the 2017-2019 academic years and to participate in seminars and conferences organized to explore our theme. A Ph.D. is required. Fellows may be able to teach one course in the fellowship’s second year. These fellowships include an annual salary of $50,000 and, in addition, an annual $2,500 allowance for professional travel and research support and additional support for moving expenses.

Candidates should submit electronically to https://apply.interfolio.com/39395 a cover letter that addresses the connection between the candidate’s scholarship and the center’s theme, a CV, a research statement, a writing sample, and three confidential letters of recommendation addressed to Professor Martha M. Umphrey, Director, Center for Humanistic Inquiry, Amherst College. Review of applications will begin on January 15, 2017, and continue until the positions are filled. Applications received by this date will be assured of full consideration. 

Amherst College is an equal opportunity employer and encourages women, persons of color, and persons with disabilities to apply.