Gabriel Peoples

Past Postdoctoral Ford Foundation Fellow '22-'23
Assistant Professor, Gender Studies, Indiana University
Ph.D. American Studies with a Certificate in Women, Gender and Sexuality Studies, The University of Maryland, College Park
research interests:
  • Black Performance Theory
  • Visual Culture
  • Sound Studies
  • Media Studies
  • Black Masculinity
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      image of book cover

      Gabriel Peoples is an assistant professor whose research is located at the nexus of performance, gender, and Africana studies. Currently, he is completing a manuscript, Goin’ Viral: Uncontrollable Black Performance, that examines the rewards and risks of “Black Virality"--rapidly repeated visual and sonic engagements with material and discursive Blackness, which are packaged as images, films, and viral videos that spread widely. In Goin' Viral he argues that while this Black virality supports commonsense ideologies about Black bodies, it also creates paths of alterity where Blackness is challenged and its histories renegotiated. As a Ford Postdoctoral Fellow during the 2022-23 school year at Washington University in St. Louis, he was set to complete his book manuscript, sharpen a digital humanities data visualization for the most viral video of 2010, and present his findings as well as his new research directions regarding communal ecstasy, the DJ, and the nuance between the meaning of a song, the feeling of it, and how that tension bears upon people marked by racialized gender. He is currently an Assistant Professor of Gender Studies at Indiana University, Bloomington.