The Patricia C. and Charles H. McGill III '63 Distinguished Lecturer and Visiting Assistant Professor of International Studies.

In the Spring of 2002, the International Studies Program welcomed the first McGill Fellow in International Studies to the campus. A generous gift from Patricia C. and Charles H. McGill III (class of ’63) enabled us to bring a fellow from around the planet to teach two courses, be in residence for a term and offer a public lecture. The fellows ranged from the award winning Indian journalist P. Sainath to the Iranian human-rights leader Nastaran Moosavi to the Cuban poet/artist Pedro Pérez Sarduy. They enriched our program, and inspired and challenged our students.

In 2008, we decided to rework the McGill Fellowship. No longer do we invite a distinguished fellow to spend a semester with us each year. Instead, we are able to have a McGill Visiting Assistant Professor of International Studies on campus for a year (to teach three courses and deliver a lecture) and in the next to invite a prominent public personality to deliver the Patricia C. and Charles H. McGill III ’63 Distinguished Lecture in International Studies at Trinity College.

In the Spring of 2009, we held the first McGill Distinguished Lecture in International Studies. The Indian Ambassador to the United Nations, Nirupam Sen, delivered the lecture on February 9, 2009.  This was followed by the first McGill Visiting Assistant Professor of International Studies, Samanthi Gunawardana, who joined the Trinity faculty in 2009-2010.

Since then, thanks to the continued support of the McGill family, we have continued the tradition of alternating a Distinguished Lecturer with a Visiting Assistant Professor, expanding both curricular and extra-curricular opportunities for our students and enlivening discussions about issues of global importance across campus. As of 2019, the McGill Fellowship is for two years.

McGill Fellow, 2023-2026

Giancarlo Rolando is a sociocultural anthropologist interested in the quotidian experience of Indigenous-settler relationships in Amazonia and the politics of identity, environmental conservation, and development. He has conducted ethnographic fieldwork with the Mastanawa People of the Upper Purus River and written about their experience of the encompassing society through analysis of their quotidian interactions with their neighbors and narratives of their contact process. His current research examines the ways in which Indigenous Peoples of Peruvian Amazonia engage with and participate in development projects and environmental conservation initiatives that overlap with their ancestral territories. At Trinity, he teaches classes on contemporary Indigenous worlds and the making of the Global South.

McGill Fellow 2021-2023

Natassja B. Gunasena is the 2020- 2022 Patricia C. and Charles H. Mcgill III Visiting Assistant Professor in International Studies. She holds a Ph.D in African and African Diaspora Studies from the University of Texas at Austin where her research focused on transnational Afro/Asian public cultures and diasporic formations of race, gender and sexuality. In her research and teaching, Dr. Gunasena emphasizes the urgency of transnational analytics for grasping how raced and gendered violence, as well as resistance to such violence, circulates through diasporic bodies and diasporic praxis. She is currently working on a monograph entitled “Cobra Women: Race, Sexuality and Afro/Asian Diasporic Formations” that explores linkages between visual cultures, race science, nation building, and racialized, performing female bodies in the late 1800s to the mid-to-late 1900s. As an instructor, she is passionate about encouraging students to think transnationally, comparatively and critically about discourses on race, gender, militarism and imperialism. At Trinity, she teaches “Global South,” “War and the Asian Diaspora” and “Queer South Asian Identities.”

McGill Fellow 2019-2021

Daniela GomesDaniela F. Gomes da Silva is from São Paulo, Brazil and is a PhD in African and African Diaspora Studies.

Dr. Gomes has been using her work to connect people in the African Diaspora. The focus of her efforts is to build international bridges to fight against racism around the globe. She has developed several lectures and participated in conferences focusing on race relations in Brazil and other countries. As an educator, Dr. Gomes believes that good teaching involves helping students to discover their path, how they want to construct a classroom environment that allows them to pursue their future. She designs her classes by thinking about strategies that will contribute to students’ growth both personally and professionally. In addition, she values the concept of intersectionality and creates her classes under an interdisciplinary approach that welcomes students’ particularities.

McGill Distinguished Lecture, 2002-2023


2023: Natassja B. Gunasena
Topic:  “The Specter of Blackness: Alexander Siddig, Tayeb Salih, and Queering Afro/Arab Masculinities in the Black Atlantic”

2021:Daniela Gomes
Topic “Diaspora Circularities: How Hip Hop and Activism Made an Afro-Brazilian Scholar”

2018: Emily Mitchell-Eaton (view the photo gallery)
Topic: “We are Here Because You Were There: The Imperial Migrations from the Marshall Islands to Arkansas

2016: Anida Ali (view the photo gallery)
Topic: “Transcending the In Between: A lecture, performance and visual experience of hybridity, otherness and exiled bodies” (read a news article about the performance)

2014: Anne-Marie Hanson (view the photo gallery)
Topic: Political ecology, recycling, marine litter, environmental justice, urban sustainability, gender and global environmental change (read a news article about the lecture)

2012: Joaquin Chavez (view the photo gallery)
Topic: “Revolutionary Pedagogies: Catholic Intellectuals, The Second Vatican Council, and the Origins of the New Left in El Salvador, 1960-1975” (read the media advisory)

2010: Samanthi Gunwardana (view the photo gallery)
Topic: Questioning the Global Anti-Sweatshop movement

2008: Thoko Ruzvideo
Unable to fulfill obligations

2006: Augustine Hungwe
Topic: Human rights and international law

2004: Pedro Perex-Sarduy
Topic: Afro Cuban race and identity

2002: Palagummi Sainath
Topic: “So Near to God, So Far From Heaven; Reporting Rural India”


2022: Craig Whitlock (view the photo gallery)
Topic: “Devoid of Fundamental Understanding of Afghanistan” (full lecture)
Link to Media Coverage
Link to Podcast

2019: Sisonke Msimang (view the photo gallery)
Topic: “Winnie and her husband: gender and global power iconography

2017: Santiago Gamboa (view the photo gallery)
Topic: ‘The art of narration and travel writing: a Latin American Writer in India

2015: Ambassador Liu Jieyi
Topic: “China and the United Nations

2013: Sharif Abdel Koudous (view the photo gallery)
Topic: “Egypt: Is it a Revolution?

2011: L. Muthoni Wanyeki (view the photo gallery)
Topic: “Kenya and its Democratic Presence

2009: Ambassador Nirupam Sen
Topic: challenging UN’s economic and political justice

2007: Pratyoush Onta
Topic: “Can NGOs generate knowledge? Reflections on the landscape of the knowledge enterprise”

2005: Nastaran Moosavi
Topic: “Revisiting Secular Thoughts in Iran”

2003: Pavel Lion
Topic: Russian folk, performance, intellectual comedy