Lily Scherlis

Cohort Year: 2019
Research Interests: 20th/21st century | Cultural studies | History of science and sociology | Performance studies | Gender and sexuality studies | Theories of character


Lily Scherlis studies labor and social performance in the twenty-first century. She researches everyday practices of social evaluation as they relate to gender, sexuality, race, and class. Her current research focuses on contingent teaching in U.S. universities. Her interests include ethnography and performance ethnography, media studies, theories of literary character, and political economy. 

In addition to scholarly and non-scholarly writing, she works in video and performance. Her work has been featured in programming at the Renaissance Society and Smart Museum of Art, and is online at She is also Nonfiction Editor at Chicago Review.

Selected Recent Work