AMUW Chair in Humanistic Studies

The Center for the Advancement of the Humanities is home to the Association of Marquette University Women Chair in Humanistic Studies. Established in 1963, the AMUW Chair in Humanistic Studies brings distinguished scholars to Marquette to teach, lecture and interact with students.

2023 Chair

AMUW 2023 Chair: Amina GautierThe Association of Marquette University Women (AMUW) and the Center for the Advancement of the Humanities are pleased to announce the selection of the 2023-2024 AMUW Women’s Chair in Humanistic Studies. Dr. Amina Gautier, Associate Professor of English at the University of Miami, will join the English department at Marquette University in August 2023.

Dr. Gautier is a scholar of nineteenth-century American literature and award-winning fiction writer. Since receiving her Ph.D. in English Literature from the University of Pennsylvania, her scholarly essays and reviews have appeared in numerous publications, including African American Review, The Cambridge Companion to The American Short Story, Critical Insights: Frederick Douglass, Daedalus, Journal of American History, Libraries and Culture, Nineteenth Century Contexts, and Whitman Noir: Essays on Black America and the Good Grey Poet.

A prolific fiction writer, Dr. Gautier is the author of three award-winning short story collections: The Loss of All Lost Things (2016), Now We Will Be Happy (2014), and At-Risk (2011). She has been the recipient of over fifty awards, fellowships, and prizes for her fiction, among which are the Blackwell Prize, the Chicago Public Library Foundation’s 21st Century Award, the Flannery O’Connor Award for Short Fiction, the International Latino Book Award, the Letras Boricuas Fellowship and the Phillis Wheatley Award. For her body of work, Dr. Gautier was awarded the Pen/Malamud Award for Excellence in the Short. She is the first African American woman to win the prestigious Pen/Malamud Award since its inception in 1988.

As the AMUW Chair, Dr. Gautier will interact with the Marquette community, teaching an advanced undergraduate fiction workshop (English 4250) and delivering the Eleanor H. Boheim Distinguished Lecture.

Some faculty in the English Department remember Dr. Gautier from her time as a Mitchem Dissertation Fellow in 2004–2005. Dr. Sarah Wadsworth comments that having her rejoin the Marquette community as AMUW Chair, “represents a remarkable opportunity for students of all levels to learn from an exceptional writer, scholar, and teacher. Her return to Marquette nearly twenty years after her time here as a Mitchem Dissertation Fellow is truly an honor to our campus and an occasion for jubilation.”

Drs. Alison Efford, Amanda Keeler, Melissa Ganz, Tara Daly, and Kate Ward served on the faculty chair selection committee.  

The Chair in Humanistic Studies was endowed in 1963 through successful fundraising by AMUW members. The Boheim Lecture Series was established concurrently with a gift from Mary Boheim Finnigan, a friend of Marquette, in honor of her mother.

A group of alumnae formed the AMUW in 1938 to provide housing for women on campus. Since then, the organization has turned its focus to scholarships; annual awards to recognize outstanding graduating students, alumnae and female faculty members; and social, spiritual and educational events that bring women together.  


Previous AMUW Chairs

2022 Chair

Dr. Mariana Ortega, Associate Professor of Philosophy and Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies at Pennsylvania State University, is a leading theorist of Latina/x feminisms. Her work, including In-Between: Latina Feminist Phenomenology, Multiplicity, and the Self, emphasizes the importance of lived experience and embodiment in human understandings of social identity. She is known for her commitment to mentoring of people of color, especially Latinx people, and for founding the Latina/x Feminisms Roundtable, which fosters intellectual exchange among Latina/x people both inside and outside of the academy.

2021 Chair

Dr. Dána-Ain Davis, Professor of Urban Studies and Anthropology at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York, will join the Marquette Department of Social and Cultural Studies for the fall 2021 semester.

2020 Chair

Dr. Mariana Ortega was not able to be with us due to COVID-19. 

2019 Chair

Professor Frances R. Aparicio is Professor Emerita at Northwestern University, where she taught in the Department of Spanish and Portuguese and directed the Latina and Latino Studies Program. Her scholarship has examined popular music and gender, transnational musics, the cultural politics of language among U.S. Latinx communities, and more recently, the multiple nationalities of Intralatinx in Chicago.

2018 Chair

Dr. N. Katherine Hayles is a professor Emerita at duke University where she served as Director of Graduate Studies in the Program in LIterature. She teaches and writes on the relations of literature, science and technology in the 20th and 21st centuries.