PhD Students

Please contact student representative Kameron Sanzo for any queries regarding student events.

Stina Attebery is a PhD candidate in English whose research focuses on science and technology studies, Indigenous studies, ecocriticism, and digital humanities. Her dissertation project, "Refusing Extinction: Biopolitics, Indigenous Sciences, and Posthuman Ecologies," considers representations of extinction and climate change in Indigenous futurism. She has published articles in the journals HumanimaliaExtrapolation, and Medical Humanities. She currently serves as a managing editor for the Eaton Journal of Archival Research in Science Fiction and as an editorial assistant for SAIL: Studies in American Indian Literatures. In addition, she was a Sawyer Fellow for the 2015-16 seminar on Alternative Futurisms and serves as a co-coordinator for the STS Methods/Visiting Scholars Committee at UCR.

Miranda Butler is a PhD student in English who researches nineteenth-century scientific discourse, especially evolutionary biology, as it relates to Victorian visual cultures, media technologies, and nineteenth-century fiction. Her M.A. work on carte-de-visite photography won the Victorian Interdisciplinary Association of the Western United States’ best graduate student paper award, and her current project considers the relationship between nineteenth-century Morse code, phonographic shorthand, and biological/linguistic typology. Miranda also traces Victorian threads into contemporary science fiction film, television, and new media spheres; she has worked as a research assistant for the Eaton Collection’s fanzine project, and is a science fiction novelist and many-time winner of National Novel Writing Month.

Lisa Jaloza Brown researches the increased fetishization of print and the theoretical as well as pedagogical implications as print and digital culture converge. Having previously drawn on the work of Gérard Genette to examine the ways in which a reader’s interpretation of a given work’s peritexts is affected dependent upon the specific medium through which the work is encountered (print, audiobook, e-book, etc)., as well as the potential benefits to be derived from these media in a classroom setting, she plans to extend that line of inquiry beyond the functional shifts of peritexts to the derivation of textual meaning overall. While print is likely to remain the dominant form through which we engage in the study of literature, she hopes to challenge the hegemony of print and explore the marginalized position currently occupied by digital content despite its arguably more egalitarian avenues of access.

Jeshua Enriquez is a PhD student in English whose research includes 20th century and contemporary American science fiction. His interests include dystopian fiction, intersections of science fiction and countercultural literature, representations of social technology in science fiction, and conceptions of Modernity and Postmodernity. His master's thesis examined the role of "cultural schizophrenia," simulation, and mass media messaging in the 1960s novels of Philip K. Dick.

Leslie Fernandez is PhD student in the Department of English. 

Graham Hall is a PhD student in the English department at UCR. His research interests include deconstruction, Deleuze, affect, interiority, space, dwelling, drugs, subjectivity, and thought (among other things). He enjoys being outside: his hobbies include hiking/backpacking, scrambling, climbing, and (most recently) skydiving.

Kyle Harp-Rushing is a PhD candidate in Anthropology with an emphasis in cultural and medical anthropology. He is interested in the co-productive relationships between emergent digital communication infrastructures and the technopolitics of “replicability crises” in the context of multiple Open Science movements. His ethnographic fieldwork with both non-profit and for-profit Open Science advocates, developers and networks (mainly in the US), as well as with experimental lab scientists, engages the contingent technocultural contexts of experimental encounters (at once richly virtual and real, unpredictable and constructed, more-than-human, ephemeral, embodied, haptic and tangible) to historicize and shed light on the participatory politics, ideologies, imaginaries, anxieties and (un)intended consequences of Open Science.

Sean Matharoo is a Ph.D. student in Comparative Literature, where he studies francophone and anglophone speculative media, postcolonial theory, ecological philosophy, memory studies and trauma theory, Deleuze, Derrida, speculative realism, new materialism, film theory, sound studies, and media archaeology. He has a forthcoming article in a special issue of Horror Studies devoted to sonic horror. He has published book reviews in Science Fiction Studies and the Journal of the Fantastic in the Arts, and has a forthcoming book review in Science Fiction Film and Television. He has encyclopedia entries in the forthcoming Horror Literature through History: An Encyclopedia of the Stories that Speak to Our Deepest Fears.He has published an interview with Erik Davis in The Los Angeles Review of Books, and has a forthcoming interview with Craig Baldwin in the Eaton Journal of Archival Research in Science Fiction. He has presented his work at the International Conference for the Fantastic in the Arts and at the Society for Literature, Science and the Arts. He is also working on a remix project involving audiovisual diagrams, dead media technologies, drone, and noise.

Walter Merryman is a Ph.D student in Comparative Literature, primarily working on 19th century English Literature and German Philosophy, particularly Nietzsche, and biopolitics. His interest in science fiction is in the way it explores various constructions of personhood, be they via embodiment, consciousness, or philosophy of mind. He is working on a dissertation proposal exploring how texts create particular social and political roles for persons through technology.

Bret Noble is a PhD candidate in the Department of Hispanic Studies and researches 20th and 21st century Mexican literature and film, particularly science fiction. He is currently researching the adoption and adaptation of postapocalyptic and dystopian literary themes by Mexican authors to theorize the Mexican state and reflect the social effects of the transition from national-populism to neoliberalism in Mexico.

Brittany Roberts is a Ph.D. candidate in Comparative Literature, where she studies Russian and Anglophone horror, science fiction, and weird fiction. Her dissertation engages the complex relationships among humans, animals, and the environment as depicted in Cold War and post-Cold War-era Russian and Anglophone horror literature and cinema. She is particularly interested in the human/non-human binary and the ways in which notions of ontological difference are both challenged and reinscribed by dark speculative fictions of the 20th century. She has presented her work at the International Conference on the Fantastic in the Arts, the Science Fiction Research Association, the Society for Literature, Science, and the Arts, and the Association for Slavic, East European, and Eurasian Studies. Her encyclopedia entries and book reviews have appeared in Science Fiction StudiesScience Fiction Film and TelevisionJournal for the Fantastic in the Arts, and Horror Literature through History: An Encyclopedia of the Stories That Speak to Our Deepest Fears.

Kameron Sanzo is a PhD student in English who focuses on science studies, particularly examinations of scientific discourse as a cultural authority. She considers science fiction literature and questions of posthumanism in order to grapple with the possibilities and limits of science in describing our social condition and ontology. She is also interested in questions of matter, structure, and material as they relate to affect and the way that we feel about ourselves, our societies, and the techno-cultural ecologies in which we are implicated.

Sang-Keun Yoo is a PhD student in the Department of English whose research focuses on intersections between postcolonialism and posthumanism as evidenced in contemporary science fiction. As a Fulbright scholar from South Korea, his current research examines decolonizing posthuman and poststructural discourses by focusing science studies, neocolonial biopolitics, Buddhist philosophy and Asian interdependent identity. He got a BA in English and Philosophy at Seoul National University, graduating cum laude. A chapter of his Masters dissertation was published in American Studies produced by the American Studies Institute at Seoul National University. He writes non-fiction and fictional works in Korean; his non-fiction book, focusing on the Korean education system, was published in Seoul and his fiction has been published in Chungsan Literature. He currently serves as vice-president of the Graduate Students of English Association. He also worked as a research assistant for various international conferences with the American Studies Association of Korea and the American Studies Institute of Seoul National University.


Ezekial Crago is a PhD student in English. His research is framed by his fascination with those writers and artists considered mavericks by both their contemporaries and posterity. His master’s thesis on the work of Orson Welles sought to respond to a sense that Welles’ work is largely misunderstood, underrepresented, and maligned. His dissertation focuses on the reconstruction of masculinity in late 20th century sf film, and he is also I interested in the social effects of ideology/mythology or dominant social narratives and the writers who work to interrogate and challenge the hypnotizing power of language and narrative.

Taylor Evans is a PhD candidate in English. His research interests include American Literature (19th and 20th century), science fiction, science and technology studies, black studies, and performance studies. His dissertation examines the way that American technoculture theorizes race, looking to archival, popular, and canonical sources to argue that race and technology were parallel developments in the US. Current work includes chapters on racialized figures (Steam Men and servants) in proto-science fiction boys’ stories and dime novels, the early emergence of post-race ideology in pulp and paperback sf, and the development of a fugitive science fiction that contests the racialized legacy of American technoculture. His article "The Technology of Race: White Supremacy and Scientificition," forthcoming from the Journal of the Fantastic in the Arts, examines the trope of technologized passing in early pulp SF and George Schuyler's novel Black No More, and he has a chapter entitled "Of Race and Robots" forthcoming in Critical Insights: Isaac Asimov. He also serves as an editor for the Eaton Journal of Archival Research in Science Fiction, and has reviews in or forthcoming from Science Fiction Studies, The Journal of Science Fiction Film and Television, Extrapolation, NYRSF, and American Literature.

Jaymee Goh Sook Yi graduated from Comparative Literature, focusing on critical race theory, postcolonialism, and science-fiction aesthetics. Her dissertation is an analysis of steampunk iconography, the affects they generate, and their reproduction in literary and performative cultural production, from the perspective of critical race theory. Jaymee has written for and Jeff Vandermeer’s Estatic Days, and been published in Steampunk III: Steampunk Revolution, The WisCon Chronicles, and Science Fiction Studies. A member of the Carl Brandon Society for diversity in SF/F, she has published short fiction and poetry in various venues such as Lightspeed Magazine, Strange Horizons, and Stone Telling. Her latest anthology, The Sea Is Ours: Tales of Steampunk Southeast Asia, co-edited with Singaporean writer Joyce Chng, was released in late 2015.

Jeff HicksThe Dystopian Cityscape in Postmodern Literature and Film. Completed 2014.
Jeff Hicks is currently assistant professor at LA City College. His areas of research include science fiction and fantasy, dystopian literature, and cult film. He has published reviews in Science Fiction Studies and Science Fiction Film and Television and is the co-author of the Oxford Online Bibliographies entry for the film Blade Runner and of the chapter on “Urban Dystopias” in The Cambridge Companion to the City in Literature. A section of his dissertation on urban dystopias was published in the anthology Marxism and Urban Culture.

Richard Hunt graduated from English. His current research areas include 20th century US literature, science fiction, cultural studies, ethnic rhetorics, and traditions of African American and Afro-diasporic musics as social and philosophic discourse. His work in sf focuses on articulations among technology, representations of subjectivity, and concepts of listening and communication, with research into the New Wave as well as the work of Octavia E. Butler, China Miéville, and musician and performer Janelle Monae.

Jennifer KavetskyThe (Manufactured) Human in U.S. Science Fiction, 1938-1950. Completed 2015.
Jennifer Kavetsky is currently the Writing Support Program Coordinator at UCR. Her ongoing research focuses on 20th century American and British speculative fiction, with a particular focus on gender.

Alan LovegreenAerofuturism: Vectors of Modernity in Nineteenth- and Twentieth Century Literature and Culture. Completed 2015.
Alan Lovegreen is currently Instructor at Orange Coast College. His research covers intersections of literature and technoculture in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, with a focus on aerofuturism in discourses of race, posthumanism, the built environment, and ecological futures.  Alan has published in The Eaton Journal of Archival Research in Science FictionScience Fiction StudiesLa Torre di Babele: Rivista di letteratura e linguistica ,Criticism: A Quarterly for Literature and the Arts, and Paradoxa.

M. Irene Morrison graduated from English. Her academic interests are primarily in the field of utopian studies, specifically utopian literature and real-world utopian ideologies. She seeks to understand how and why the Western concept of utopia is coterminous with colonialism, and the roles that science and technology (also coterminous with colonial expansion) play in utopian ideology. If utopia is a literature of colonialism, can postcolonial theory be used to both challenge and re-envision utopia? One key to this re-envisioning must be an examination of the science and technology used both in the service of colonial expansion and in utopian literature. Writers and film-makers such as Larissa Sansour (Palestinian), Nanobah Becker (Diné/Navajo), and Nalo Hopkinson (Afro-Caribbean) challenge the mainstream science fictional tradition of uncritically deploying technology to laud the rhetoric of Western technological progress.

This work has evolved from her Masters’ thesis on Ursula K. Le Guin’s feminist science fiction novel, The Dispossessed. Using feminist and anarchist theorists including Maria Mies, Vandana Shiva, and Noam Chomsky, it explored the political theory behind the anarchist planet Annares, as well as the allegorical significance of the Earth-like twin planet, Urras. Anarres is an “ambiguous utopia,” and provides a wealth of ideas and challenges to traditional anarchist theory, while marrying feminist and environmentalist concepts with anarchist ones in provocative ways.

Josh Pearson is a PhD candidate in English.  His dissertation “Managing Power: Financialization and Gendered Heroism in Late Capitalist Popular Culture” investigates how finance capitalism and the rise of neoliberalism shapes representation of racialized gender norms in science fiction and fantasy texts. Josh's article “Seeing the Present, Grasping the Future: Articulating a ‘Financial’ Vision in Capitalist Realism” was published in Paradoxa, and his reviews have appeared in Science Fiction Studies, Science Fiction Film and Television, and The Journal of Fantastic in the Arts.  He is a founding editor of The Eaton Journal of Archival Research in Science Fiction.

Lorenzo Servitje graduated from English at the University of California at Riverside His work examines the mutual constitution of literature and medicine in the Victorian era, in addition to representation of medical discourse in popular culture. His articles have appeared in Literature and Medicine,  Journal of Medical HumanitiesCritical Survey, and Science Fiction Studies. He has co-edited two collections, The Walking Med: Zombies and the Medical Image (Pennsylvania State Press, 2016) and Endemic: Essays in Contagion Theory (Palgrave, 2016).

Alexander Shafer graduated from Hispanic Studies. His research focuses on Latin American literature, cultural studies, and queer theory.  He is currently writing his dissertation on the intersection of race, gender, and sexuality in Mexican and Argentine science fiction. He has presented his research on Latin American SF at various conferences, including the Ometeca Conference for Science and Literature and the Eaton Science Fiction Conference.

Jerome WinterNostalgia for Infinity: New Space Opera and Neoliberal Globalism, Completed 2015.
Jerome Winter is currently a full-time lecturer in composition at UCR. His latest research involves ecocriticism and recent speculative fiction from Afrodiasporic women writers. His book, Science Fiction, New Space Opera, and Neoliberal Globalism (2016), was published by the University of Wales Press as part of their New Dimensions in Science Fiction series. His scholarship generally focuses on the intersection of globalization and contemporary speculative fiction, and he has served as editor of Speculative Fiction for the Los Angeles Review of Books and contributed a chapter on SF art and illustration to the Oxford Handbook of Science Fiction (2014). He has published articles, interviews, and reviews in ExtrapolationJournal of Fantastic and the Arts, the Los Angeles Review of BooksSFRA, and Science Fiction Studies.

Mark YoungSonic Retro-Futures: Musical Nostalgia as Revolution in Post-1960s American Literature, Film, and Technoculture. Completed 2015.
Mark Young teaches at the University of California, San Diego, where he serves as the Assistant Director of the Warren College Writing Program. He specializes in sound studies, digital media, science fiction, and American literature. His work has been published in Critique: Studies in Contemporary FictionScience Fiction StudiesScience Fiction Film and Television, Extrapolation, the Journal of the Fantastic in the Arts, the SFRA Review, and the Los Angeles Review of Books.