Graduate Students

Students in the Ph.D. program in Comparative Ethnic Studies are interested in a broad range of topics, which they study using a variety of theoretical frameworks and research methodologies.

Awon AtuireAwon Atuire
Awon Atuire is our first Ph.D. candidate in the Comparative Ethnic Studies program. He received his B.A. in English Literature, M.F.A. in Creative Writing, and graduate certificate in Comparative Ethnic Studies from the University of Colorado Boulder. His area of focus in the Ph.D. program is Africana history, culture, and literature. His dissertation project, "Poetics of Place and Space in West African Fiction," offers an intersectional analysis of Africana peoples' aspirational re-spatializations of the cartographies of Atlantic slavery, colonization, imperialism, and globalization in West African fiction. In addition, he is currently researching the oral tradition, memory-making, and heritage tourism in northern Ghana. A spoken word artist and a writer, Awon's book length manuscript, "Broken Horn Bull" is a collection of short stories and essays.


Wayne FreemanWayne Freeman
My research uses varied methods and generally revolves around popular culture and discourses as they relate to the the reproduction of and/or resistance to existing hierarchies and boundaries of race, class, gender, sexuality, and power. Areas of interest include Chican@ culture and history, Hip Hop studies, masculinites, interethnic relations, mixed race studies, sports, and social change and social justice, among others.

Deanne GrantDeanne Grant
My research is a qualitative study on urban Native American women's understanding of gender roles and responsibilities. Native American women's perspectives are rarely centered in academia, but in an effort to decolonize my academic endeavors, my research aims to center these voices and perspectives. Early findings show urban Native American women possess a unique understanding of our world rooted in cultural interpretations. Urban Native American women possess great awareness of their gender specific roles and accompanying responsibilities to themselves, their families, their communities, and the future of our world.

Amani HusainAmani Husain
Amani recently graduated with her MA in communication focusing on rhetoric from the University of Colorado Boulder. Beginning Fall 2015 she will be a PhD student in the Department of Ethnic Studies at CU-Boulder serving as a Graduate Teaching Assistant for the course Crime & Society. Through critical, intersectional scholarship Amani's work seeks to gain a deeper sense as to how discursive identifications and affiliations work to create affective and material conditions that both close and open spaces for certain bodies. She works at the intersections of rhetoric, critical race studies, and critical affect studies.

Raúl MelgozaRaúl Melgoza
My research focuses on the ontological and epistemic manifestations that arise out of Chican@ decolonial theories and praxes. I am interested in how Chican@ decolonial performances are in dialogue with Indigenous decolonial efforts within the U.S. settler state, and the comparative approaches surrounding discourses of sovereignty, illegality, race, citizenship, and recognition.