Reading Groups

Reading groups are an important part of the research-friendly environment fostered by the Theory Centre. Often founded by graduate students, reading groups are one of the means by which Masters and Doctoral students are fully integrated into the research culture of the program. Reading groups focus on the dissemination of new research through meetings and discussion groups, and include:

Works in Progress workshop group critically and constructively engage with one another's work in a context outside of seminars and the Theory Sessions, offering a more informal setting yet still structured and fruitful. Ideally, it will serve as a kind of forum for us to share our knowledge, thoughts, and support regarding the academic environment from our own perspectives as graduate students. 

We will meet every 2 weeks for 1-2 hours to workshop a fellow student's paper (approx. 20-25 pages). Works should be drafts in progress or that you intend to edit or rework to submit for publication, as a conference presentation, or even as a section for a thesis/dissertation chapter. 

We will circulate the paper(s) via email to be read by the group no later than one week before we meet. The group is open to everyone at the Centre, MA and PhD students alike. Please email if you are interested in attending or presenting on a specific date. If you are unable to make it to campus, we can easily conference or Skype you in to join us!

The "non-class"

The non-class has gathered by the guidance of Professor Regna Darnell since the fall of 2016, beginning with a group of graduate students from both the Department of Anthropology and the Centre for the Study of Theory and Criticism, and lately including graduate students from the Department of English and Writing Studies. The non-class is intended as an alternative space for intellectual discussion, distinct from other academic environments such as courses, topic-driven reading groups, seminar series, and so on. What coheres the non-class is a shared interest in exploratory and interdisciplinary conversations that traverse issues of social, civilizational, and ecological justice, the development of decolonial and collaborative research paradigms, the variety of forms and uses of critical theory, and relationships both actual and possible between the humanities, the social sciences, the natural and medical sciences, and extra-academic life.

Participants in the non-class are encouraged not only to allow their own research interests to inflect discussions and freely suggest readings and topics for the meetings, but also to bring their own research interests into direct, potentially transformative relationship with each other's. For more information, contact Grant Dempsey at