University of Southern California USC

Fall 2012 cohort

Lauren Jennings (Musicology) received her Ph.D. in Historical Musicology from the University of Pennsylvania in 2012. Her research focuses on intersections between music and literature in 14th-century Italy, as reflected in her dissertation, Tracing Voices: Song as Literature in Late Medieval Italy. As a Provost’s Postdoctoral Scholar, she will continue her work on the material life of 14th-century Italian song in both notated and un-notated sources, aiming to subvert the conventional separation of poetry and music and to demonstrate how the literary identity of song texts is central to the musical and cultural significance of this repertoire.

Julianne Werlin (English) receive her Ph.D. in English from Princeton University in 2012.  Her research interests include Early Modern literature, politics, intellectual history, as well as contemporary poetry and the history of utopian and science fiction. During her time at USC, Julianne aims to revise her dissertation, The Impossible Probable: Modeling Utopia in Early Modern England, into a book. In addition, she plans to begin a second book project on the poetics of war.

Gaoheng Zhang (French and Italian) received his PhD in Italian Studies from New York University in 2011. His work draws on theoretical works in cinema, mobility, and gender and masculinity studies, analyzing Italian notions of national identity, class, migration, colonialism, and East-West relations through the lens of the cinematic construction of the mobility and gendered identities of travelers in these films. His current book project entitled The Culture of Chinese Immigration to Italy (2000-2010): Identity, Media, Entrepreneurship, and Diplomacy investigates how identities of Chinese immigrants in Italy were constructed and contested in the media by Italians and the immigrants themselves between 2000 and 2010. He plans to analyze the impact Chinese entrepreneurship in Italy and international diplomacy has had on these immigrants’ racial and gendered identity negotiations.


Three Provost’s Postdoctoral Scholars from this cohort have secured faculty positions after just one year of postdoctoral fellowship:


Bradford Bouley (History) received his Ph.D. from Stanford University. His area of specialization is in early modern Europe with a focus on religious and scientific developments, especially as they relate to contemporary understanding of the human body. While at USC, he converted his dissertation, Dissecting the Holy: Anatomy and Sanctity in Early Modern Italy, into a manuscript for publication.

Bouley will join the Department of History at Penn State as an Assistant Professor of History.

Anastasia Kayiatos (Slavic Languages and Literature) received her Ph.D. in Slavic Languages and Literatures with a Designated Emphasis in Women, Gender and Sexuality from the University of California, Berkeley. Her research interests concern gender, sexuality, and the body in Russia from the nineteenth century to the present. Also, she has fully developed a second field in queer and feminist theory, and a specialization in deaf and disability studies. During her time at USC, Kayiatos revised her dissertation into a book manuscript on silent performances of sexual difference in the Soviet Union, entitled Suggestive Gestures: Toward a Queer Socialist Aesthetic.

Kayiatos will join Macalester College’s Russian Studies Department.

Bryan W. Roberts (Philosophy) received his PhD in History and Philosophy of Science from the University of Pittsburgh. His research interests bridge between questions of traditional philosophy and the constraints of modern physics, as reflected in his dissertation, Time and ontology: a study in the foundations of quantum theory. As a Provost’s Postdoctoral Scholar, he aimed to expand on his dissertation for publication through further investigation of the connection between time and ontology when relativity is considered and the exploration of the broader question about our human ability to measure time.

Roberts will begin work as a tenure-track lecturer with the Department of Philosophy, Logic and Scientific Method at the London School of Economics and Political Science in October 2013.