Jessica Winegar | Interim Director (2017-2018), Alice Kaplan Institute for the Humanities

Jessica Winegar
  • Phone: 847-491-4831
  • Office Location: Kaplan Office: Kresge 2350; Anthropology Office: 515 Clark Street
  • E-mail:
  • Jessica is the Harold H. and Virginia Anderson Chair in the Department of Anthropology and a member of the Core Faculty of the Program in Middle East and North African Studies. Her research areas include contemporary arts and cultural production in the Middle East and US critical university studies. She is author of the award-winning book, Creative Reckonings: The Politics of Art and Culture in Contemporary Egypt, and of Anthropology’s Politics: Disciplining the Middle East (with Lara Deeb). She has taught twice in the Kaplan Scholars Program and in the Global Humanities Lab, and has been a member of the Kaplan Humanities Council.

Tom Burke | Assistant Director

Tom Burke

Megan Skord | Program Assistant 4

Megan Skord

Jill Mannor | Communications Coordinator

Jill Mannor
  • Phone: 847-467-3970
  • Office Location: Kresge Hall 2350
  • E-mail:
  • Jill Mannor has a background in graphic design, marketing, advertising and development. In the non-profit world, she worked to develop the capabilities, audience and culture of Chicago Children’s Museum, Kohl Children’s Museum, Lincoln Park Zoo and Imagine Chicago. In the agency space, she managed projects and creative teams for clients in cultural/arts, microfinance and higher education. Jill is a board member of The Seldoms, a Chicago dance company whose performances explore pressing social, political, and environmental issues. Her volunteer work has included EPIC: Engaging Philanthropy, Inspiring Creatives; North Park Village Nature Center; Sit Stay Read and the Illinois Safe Schools Alliance. Jill received a B.A. in English from Hope College.

    Contact Jill for questions regarding Co-sponsorships, Evanston Northwestern Humanities Lecture Series, The Odyssey Project, public humanities initiatives, Franke Undergraduate and Graduate Fellowships, Undergraduate Curriculum, and media requests.

Rosie Roche | Northwestern Arts Manager

Rosie Roche
  • Phone: 847-467-3974
  • Office Location: Kresge Hall 2350
  • E-mail:
  • Rosie Roche is the Northwestern Arts Manager, working across performance, visual arts and music. Rosie is excited to lead the Arts Circle, building broader awareness and appreciation of Northwestern Arts through enhanced programming and multidisciplinary collaborations.

    Rosie is delighted to be part of the Kaplan Institute, as her training and passion lie in exploring the humanities through art. She has a rich base of experience devising multidisciplinary arts programs in museums and heritage-sites. A native Londoner, Rosie has lived in Evanston for nearly a decade, and brings an international perspective to enhance the public understanding and appreciation of the arts. She is committed to engaging diverse audiences through meaningful interpretation that helps participants forge personal connections to art and cultural heritage.

Jules Law | Coordinator, Kaplan Humanities Scholars Program

Jules Law
  • Phone: 847-491-5526
  • Office Location: University Hall 313
  • E-mail:
  • Jules Law, Professor of English and Comparative Literary Studies, is a specialist in literary theory and Victorian literature. His various essays on Derrida, Joyce, Wittgenstein, and other theoretical topics have appeared in PMLA, Critical InquirySIGNS, New Literary History, and other journals.  He is the author of The Rhetoric of Empiricism (Cornell, 1993) and The Social Life of Fluids: Blood, Milk, and Water in the Victorian Novel (Cornell, 2010). Essays from his current book project, Virtual Victorians: Technologies of Immediation in the Nineteenth-Century Novel, have appeared in ELH, Nineteenth Century Literature, and Novel: A Forum on Fiction. He has received numerous teaching and public-service awards including the Charles Deering McCormick Professorship of Teaching (2007) and the Centro Romero Community Leadership award (2008).

Mira Balberg | Coordinator, Franke Fellows

Mira Balberg
  • Phone: 847-467-1746
  • Office Location: Crowe Hall 4-137
  • E-mail:
  • Mira Balberg (PhD Stanford University) is Associate Professor at the department of Religious Studies. She specializes in ancient Mediterranean Religions, with a focus on the emergence and development of Judaism in antiquity (200 BCE–500 CE). She is particularly interested in the ways in which the rabbis of late antiquity interpreted and transformed biblical institutions, concepts, and values through dialogue and interaction with Greek, Roman, and early Christian cultures. Balberg is the author of Purity, Body, and Self in Early Rabbinic Literature (University of California Press, 2014) and Blood for Thought: The Reinvention of Sacrifice in Early Rabbinic Literature (University of California Press, 2017). Others topics on which she has published include the human body and its changing cultural meanings in ancient Jewish texts, textual and material religion, and the production of knowledge in late antiquity. ​​

Joel Harrison | Graduate Assistant

Joel Harrison
  • Joel Harrison is a PhD candidate in the Department of Religious Studies at Northwestern. He holds a BA in English Education from California State University, Long Beach, an MA in English from the University of Northern Colorado, and an MA in Theology from Fuller Theological Seminary. His work is focused on the relationship between theology and social theory at the turn of the 20th century and theory and method in the early history of religious studies. His dissertation, Between History and Normativity: Ernst Troeltsch's Mystic Type and the Creative Agency of Values, reads Ernst Troeltsch's "mystic type" in his theological sociology of the Church as a way of understanding Troeltsch's later work in the philosophy of history, particularly his solution to the problem of history and normativity. Joel's scholarly work is deeply interdisciplinary, combining questions, issues, and approaches from religious studies, sociology, philosophy, critical theory, and theology, and his engagement with the Northwestern undergraduate community reflects this. Joel has been invited to speak at the Northwestern Undergraduate Critical Theory Workshop on topics ranging from Max Weber's The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism to the "death of God" theology of mid-20th century. For the last two years, Joel has served as the Assistant Chair to Chapin, the Humanities Residential College. Originally from Southern California, Joel and his wife Melissa live in Rogers Park with their new daughter, Wilhelmina. They enjoy exploring Chicago's neighborhoods, trying new restaurants, seeing their favorite bands perform, and attending local theater.

Wendy L. Wall | Director, Alice Kaplan Institute for the Humanities (on leave 2017-2018)

Wendy L. Wall
  • Phone: 847-467-3971
  • E-mail:
  • Avalon Professor of the Humanities; Professor of English

    Wendy Wall, Professor of English (Ph.D. University of Pennsylvania), specializes in early modern literature and culture. She is author of Recipes for Thought: Knowledge and Taste in the Early Modern English Kitchen (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2015), The Imprint of Gender: Authorship and Publication in the English Renaissance (Cornell University Press, 1993), and Staging Domesticity: Household Work and English Identity in Early Modern Drama (Cambridge University Press, 2002), which was a finalist for the Modern Language Association's James Russell Lowell Prize and a 2002 Choice Outstanding Academic Title Award Winner.