Graduate Program

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Jenna Hanchey

Seeking Ph.D., Rhetoric and Language Studies

Jenna Hanchey is a PhD student in the Department of Communication Studies, and recipient of a three-year Powers Graduate Fellowship from the Graduate School at UT Austin. Though she is pursuing a degree in Rhetoric and Language, her work also intersects with Organizational Communication, Critical Intercultural Communication, Women and Gender Studies, and Critical/Cultural Studies.

Her MA thesis examines the political construction of Peace Corps narratives through the lens of intersectional postcolonial theory.  She not only criticizes the neocolonial, raced, and gendered narratives of returned Peace Corps volunteers, but also seeks out points of rupture from which to theorize decolonial possibility.  Using participant observation and in-depth interviews in addition to textual analysis, her work helps to bring postcolonial theory into a relatively new arena.

Currently, she is interested in dynamics of international aid and assistance to Sub-Saharan Africa.  She hopes to integrate analyses of race, gender, nation, and class, in order to examine the material and discursive complexities of international aid.  Jenna plans on doing part of her dissertation research in East Africa, focusing on how international aid organizations work on the ground in relation to the communities involved.  Since she is adept in Swahili, her dissertation work will most likely engage with organizations in Tanzania and Kenya.


View Jenna Hanchey's vita in PDF format


Hometown: St. Joseph, MI

BS Degree: Physics and Mathematics Education
Taylor University, Upland, IN

MA Degree: Organizational Communication / Rhetoric
University of Colorado, Boulder