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Faculty Profile Q&A: Kundai Chirindo

July 03, 2012

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    Kundai Chirindo, Assistant Professor in Rhetoric & Media Studies

Name: Kundai Chirindo

Title: Assistant Professor in Rhetoric & Media Studies

Education: Ph.D. 2012 (anticipated) University of Kansas; M.A. 2008, B.A. 2004 Bethel University

Research & Teaching Interests: Rhetoric, culture, and hermeneutics, the discursive construction of Obama, Africa in the public imaginary

What most excites you about joining the LC community?

I got my undergraduate degree and first job at a liberal arts college like Lewis & Clark.  After spending the last few years in a large university, I look forward to experiencing the collegiality and intimacy the Pioneer community enjoys.

Describe the current trajectory of your scholarly research.

My research focuses on questions about the ideological work done by discourses of identity in various African contexts an in the African diaspora.  I am interested in how different understandings of Africa and Africanness are used for political purposes.  My dissertation, for example, studies how Barack Obama‚Äôs African roots affected his rise to the presidency.  In the future, I hope to study how African identities invented during colonialism affect present-day politics in Sub-Saharan Africa.  I am interested in the different ways that African politicians these evoke identities to advance their political agendas.

What kind of hobbies or special activities do you enjoy outside of work?

I enjoy live jazz, camping, watching sports, and cooking.  

What were your childhood goals/aspirations?

For the longest time I wanted to have a photography business like my father did. 

What are you listening to in your car right now?

I am going between NPR and podcasts of The Judge John Hodgman Show.   

What was your favorite childhood story?

I remember laughing the most when I heard trickster tales about the hare outsmarting the baboon.

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