Email a Current Student


Communicating with current students is another great way to learn about the Master of Arts Program in the Humanities (MAPH) and the larger University of Chicago community. You are welcome to contact any of the current students profiled below.

Megan Beckerich |
Megan graduated from Northern Kentucky University (NKU) in 2016 with a B.A. in International Studies, and minors in Japanese, Chinese, and Ancient Civilization Studies. At NKU, Megan did her senior thesis on Japanese ghosts and monsters in folklore, and she also completed two additional independent study projects: one on Chinese women in folklore, and the other a historiography of Afro-Chinese trade in the pre-modern and ancient world. At the University of Chicago, Megan is focusing on East Asian Civilization Studies through the MAPH program. For her master’s thesis she plans to pursue her studies the depiction of ghosts in Edo-period Japanese visual culture in relation to popular storytelling and folklore. Megan's hobbies are playing board games, trying new baked goods, and sharing her numerous cat pictures with anyone who will look.

Kevin Beerman |
Kevin graduated from New York University in 2016 with a BA in Comparative Literature and American Studies, and a concentration on Hispanic Literatures. Their undergraduate thesis, "In the Shadow of a Rainbow: Queer Narration in 'A Fire in My Belly'" explored the effects of a queer subjectivity that experienced as disjointed, haunted, violent, and silenced in David Wojnarowicz's unfinished 1987 short film "A Fire in My Belly." In their studies at UChicago, they are focusing primarily on intersections of poetics, history, and embodiment. Their thesis work is interested in questions of lyrical poetics, the problematics of how a poetic speaker survives the violence of historicization, and the effects of geography & space on the embodiment of lyrical voice. Outside of MAPH, Kevin bakes bomb brownies, explores the city on their bike, Ruby, writes poetry that lives mostly in a journal they keep hidden under their bed, and watches almost exclusively HBO legacy dramas. You can reach out to Kevin with any question, but especially if you want to learn about what it is like to live in Hyde Park as a queer person, how to get involved in Chicago's iconic poetry scene, or how to make the University's workshops work for your interests. 

Dain Broadbent |
Dain graduated from Southern Virginia University in 2013 with a BA in English and a minor in art. Their final thesis was a deconstruction of views on deity and religion between the poetic works of the romanticist William Blake and the modernist Wallace Stevens. Their academic interests include modernist art and literature, art culture studies, social activism, young adult fiction, queer culture, and feminist art. During their undergraduate career they were a writing tutor, wrestler, intern in the university’s Communications Department, and service committee officer. Before joining MAPH, Dain was a full-time employee at a local nonprofit in Salt Lake City, UT, working in development, or fundraising. They are currently at the University of Chicago to study the relationship between art and social activism, and intend to write their thesis on the works and lives of Gertrude Stein, James Baldwin, Richard Avedon, and Judy Chicago. They also hold a position on the MAPH Committee Board, which works to provide MAPH student with representation and event planning both on and off campus. Dain loves finding new food digs, petting their cat, listening to music, and exploring the city.

Larry Daschlager |
After teaching and directing middle and high school Theatre Arts for twenty-five years, Larry left Texas to attend Columbia College Chicago where he received a B.A. in Cinema Studies. He is currently a MAPH student at University of Chicago as part of the Cinema and Media Studies program. Future goals include becoming a published film historian and continuing his teaching career at the college level.

Maxine Frendel |
My name is Maxine Frendel and I am a MAPH student focusing in Gender & Sexuality Studies and Theater & Performance Studies. I have a research interest in experimental puppetry, specifically as a theoretical tool for political resistance, gendering of the body, and understanding historical moments where purposeful parafiction is deployed as a performative tool (i.e. "fake news"!) and their associated affect. Over the summer before MAPH I was grateful to complete research in the Bread & Puppet archives in Glover, VT. On campus, I am an active participant in the TAPS and GSS workshops, and recently was selected as an actor for the Alternate Reality Game that took place during O-Week. I also graduated from UChicago College in 2016 with a degree in Sociology. Outside of school, I am the Marketing Director and an Ensemble Member of Chimera Ensemble, a professional Meisner-based theatre ensemble in Chicago that was founded in part by several UChicago grads. I have over 10 years experience as a freelance writer and digital strategist, and before coming to MAPH I worked in Public Relations. In a previous life before UChicago entirely, I was a competitive freestyle mogul skier, and qualified for the Junior Olympics in 2009, 2010, and 2011. I hope to earn my PhD someday and become a professor, encouraging students to re-think their social fabric and certain assumptions about human life within capitalism and patriarchy they may take as "given," as UChicago has done, and continues to do, to me. 

Hannah Looney |
Hannah recently earned her BA in French Literature from Reed College, where she conducted thesis research on the meta-poetics of Guillaume Apollinaire and Paul Éluard. She is taking advantage of the flexibility afforded by MAPH to complete coursework in creative writing, film, and poetics. Her masters thesis will investigate poetic figurations of jealousy and madness in Serge Gainsbourg's 1976 concept album ''L'homme à tête de chou''. In her free time she enjoys watching Italian comedies at Doc Films and clandestine bird-watching. She would be more than happy to answer questions about the program, student life, or where to find the best deep dish.

Weronika Malek |
Weronika graduated from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2017, with Bachelor of Fine Arts with an Emphasis in Art History, Theory, and Criticism. Her undergraduate thesis focused on paintings of Jacek Malczewski and how his self-portraits as religious figures fitted in the Polish historical context of 1910s. Weronika continues her studies in Art History during the MAPH program. In the free time, she loves going to opera and theatre, taking advantage of Chicago's cultural scene. She will be happy to answer any question about Art History at MAPH and about living in Chicago.

Cristóbal Martinez |
My name is Cristóbal Martinez, and I'm a queer first gen/low income xicanx. I took a five-year gap after my undergrad to be sure this is something I wanted to pursue. I initially applied for my PhD, but was referred to the MAPH program, and I think it was probably the best thing to happen to me as it allowed me to hone my skills in critical analysis and writing while also exposing me to other disciplines that relate to my studies/interests.

I'm studying 20/21st century american/latinx literature, queer theory, comic books, critical race studies, film analysis, post-colonialism, critical theory, identity formation, and the intersections in between.

Josh Primiano |
Josh is originally from New England. His undergraduate background is in the liberal arts, having taken his bachelor's at St. John's College in 2013. He wrote his thesis on Wallace Stevens' poetry and the theory of poetics outlined in a number of his prose works. Since graduation he has taught English in Japan, pulled espresso in Santa Fe, and assessed property values in Rhode Island, eventually wending his way to Chicago as a student in MAPH where he is currently focusing on political philosophy and theory. In particular, he has an interest in liberalism and its various paths of development on the American and European continents; the reception of republican values by the American founders from early modern and Ancient sources; and the rise of Leftist critiques of the liberal state and capital.  Looking ahead, he hopes to pursue a PhD relating to these areas. He would love to talk with anyone interested in approaching MAPH with an eye to bridging the divide between the humanities and social sciences, especially those coming from "outsider" undergraduate backgrounds in the liberal arts or related fields.

Julia Walker |
Julia Walker graduated from the University of California, Irvine with a BA in Art History and a Minor in Educational Studies. Her primary focus during her undergraduate career was art of Ancient Greece and Rome and she presented her research at a Roman Art Seminar on the propagandistic campaign of Livia, the second wife of Augustus. While completing her Bachelor’s Degree, Julia also ran the Model United Nations Program and taught classes in the Social Sciences Department. During her year in MAPH, Julia hopes to expand her knowledge of Art History through focused study based on the themes of patronage, purpose, and viewer reception rather than a strict adherence to a specific artistic period. She plans to write a Graduate Thesis that tracks propaganda from the Ancient Western civilizations through Early Modern periods where government and religious commissioned monuments served as public art. She will then compare this to present day techniques of propaganda that focus on print and digital media in an effort to examine how this shift has affected society’s view and value of art. Julia would be happy to answer any questions about MAPH, Art History, or moving somewhere cold when you have never owned snow boots before in your life (she’s a Southern California native who has a lot to say on the subject).