Lauren Siegel

Ph.D. Student in Africana Studies


Lauren Siegel is a doctoral candidate in Africana studies at Cornell University. She holds an MA in African Literature from University of London, SOAS, where she explored feminist films in francophone west Africa. She also served as programming associate for Film Africa, London’s annual festival of African cinema and culture. Lauren earned her BA in Black Studies (honors) from UC Santa Barbara, where her undergraduate dissertation on black entrepreneurship under the Great Recession was selected for publication in the department’s research journal, Black Studies Review. Her most recent position in Accra, Ghana allowed her to work as an international baccalaureate literature teacher to students from across 16 African countries. Prior to joining Cornell, she was program coordinator at MIT-AFRICA Initiative, which encourages mutually beneficial relationships in research, education, and innovation across the continent.

Her research interests engage ecocriticism, body politics, and psychoanalysis as such categories inform and are informed by African and African diasporic screen arts. Her work has been featured in Kalfou and The Black Scholar. Lauren has been awarded grants from the Rose Goldsen Archive of New Media Art, the Institute of Comparative Modernities, and the Sharjah Art Foundation for her commitment to visual studies.