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Dr. Lindsay Balfour

Assistant Professor, Communication Studies

Dr. Lindsay Balfour
Office: L-CJ 5215 
Communication Studies and Journalism Building,
7141 Sherbrooke W.
Phone: (514) 848-2424 ext.

I hold a PhD in Cultural Studies from the University of British Columbia. Prior to joining the faculty at Concordia I was a Visiting Scholar at New York University and an Andrew W. Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow at the September 11 Memorial and Museum. My research, in brief, focuses on how the philosophy of hospitality intersects with race, class, gender, and violence in the global art, media, and visual culture produced in the aftermath of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. 

I am the author of Hospitality in a Time of Terror: Strangers at the Gate (2017), published by Rowman and Littlefield/Bucknell University Press. This book investigates the role of entertainment media, popular culture, and visuality after 9/11 from an interdisciplinary humanities perspective. It seeks to examine how the popular artistic, filmic, and literary responses to 9/11 and its aftermath – and, in particular, diasporic, marginalized, and postcolonial responses – have much to offer in terms of how we might apprehend others and otherness in a time of terror and uncertainty. I am currently revising my second monograph The Art of Encounter: Political Hospitality after 9/11 which explores the role of the 9/11 Memorial Museum and its use of visual culture to enhance visitor experience, historical narrative, and empathetic understanding. 

At the 9/11 Museum, I was tasked with adding more cultural and media content to the institution's public programs. Working with the programming team, we held events including panels discussing the representation of otherness in the Showtime series Homeland (with show-runners Alex Gansa and Howard Gordon, and actor Mandy Patinkin), artistic responses to trauma (with Don DeLillo and Eric Fischl), media coverage of 9/11 (with panelists from the New York Times, Associated Press, and Vice), the social media recruitment strategies of ISIS (with Cole Bunzel and Graeme Wood), and live dance, music, theatre, film, and poetry performances.

Teaching activities

COMS 369: Visual Communication and Culture

COMS 462/532: Communication, Culture, and Popular Art (Street Art and Graffiti)

COMS 632/885: Media and Contemporary Culture (Cultures of Hospitality)

COMS 424/545: Television Studies (Carceral Bodies on the Small Screen)

COMS 473/547: International Communication



Hospitality in a Time of Terror:Strangers at the Gate. Lewisburg: Bucknell University Press. Lanham: Bucknell University Press/Rowman and Littlefield, 2017. 


“Traumatic Ruins and the Archeology of Sound.”Journal of Sonic Studies. (Forthcoming January 2018).

“Risky Cosmopolitanism: Intimacy and Autoimmunity in MohsinHamid’s The Reluctant Fundamentalist.” Critique: Studies in Contemporary Fiction. Volume58, Number 1 (October 2016).

“Unlikely Cryptfellows: Hospitality, Difference, and Spectrality at the9/11 Museum.” Journal of Aesthetics and Culture. Volume 7 (Fall 2015). 

 "Framing Redress after 9/11: Protest, Reconciliation and Canada’s Waron Terror Against Indigenous Peoples." Canadian Journal of Native Studies. Volume 34,Number 1. Pp. 1-17 (Fall 2014).

 “Organic Shrapnel and the Possibility of Violence.” Affinities: AJournal of Radical Theory, Culture, and Action. Volume 7, Number 1 (Winter 2013).

“Sympathy for the Devil: (Re)Reading The Satanic Verses After 9/11 andLearning to Love the Monster (Within).” Postcolonial Text. Volume 7, Number 4 (2012).

Participation activities

Conference Presentations

“Hospitality in an Age of Debt: Radical Hospitality in Contemporary Art.” CulturalStudies Association Annual Meeting. Georgetown University, Washington, DC. May 25-18,2017.

“From Artifact to Art: Museum Hospitality and the Unhomely Aestheticization ofRemnant Objects.” American Studies Association Annual Meeting. Denver. November 17-20,2016.

“Women, ISIS, and the Street Art of Resistance. Popular Culture Association ofCanada. McGill University. May 6-8, 2016.

“Violence, Memorialization, Hospitality?: Making the Case for Public Art at the 9/11Museum. The Politics of Memory: Victimization, Violence and Contested Narratives of the Past.Columbia University, New York. December 2015.

“The ‘Falling Men’ of 9/11: Richard Drew, Don DeLillo and the Reproduction ofPhotography.” Northeast Modern Language Association. Ryerson University, Toronto, Canada.April 2015.

“Insecure Cosmopolitanism: Intimacy and Auto-immunity in Mohsin Hamid’s TheReluctant Fundamentalist.” American Comparative Literature Association Annual Meeting.University of Washington, Seattle, United States. March 2015.

“Diaspora and Disorientation in Post-9/11 London: Reading Gender and Agency inthe Geographical Interfaces of Monica Ali’s Brick Lane.” Literary London Society AnnualConference. University of London, England. July 2013.

"When Word Meets Image: Teaching Visual Media Methodologies." CanadianComparative Literature Association at CONGRESS. University of Victoria, Canada. June 2013.

“Domesticity, Diaspora and Orientations on the Edge.” Canadian Association forCommonwealth Literature and Language Studies at CONGRESS. University of Victoria, Canada.June 2013.

“Fiction, Journalism and the Visual Mediation of National Mourning in The9/11 Report: A Graphic Adaptation." Pacific and Ancient Modern Language AssociationConference. Seattle University, Washington. October 2012.

Balfour, Lindsay. “Apprehending Otherness at Abu Ghraib: Technology and the Recognition ofSuffering.” Borders and Border Crossings Conference. University of British ColumbiaOkanagan. Kelowna, Canada. May 2012.

“Organic Shrapnel: Flesh, Vulnerability and the Ethical Possibilities of MetaphoricEmbeddedness in 9/11 Fiction.” American Comparative Literature Association Annual Meeting.Brown University. Providence, Rhode Island. March 2012.

“Contesting Canada’s Multicultural Imaginary: Race and Language in Lorena Gale’sJe me Souviens.” Borders and Border Crossings Conference. University of British ColumbiaOkanagan. Kelowna, Canada. April 2010.

“Looking Saddam in the Eye: Emergent Technologies and the Ethics of VisualConfrontation.” Photography and International Conflict Conference. Clinton Institute forAmerican Studies, University College Dublin, Ireland. June 2009. 

Invited Talks and Lectures

“Spencer Finch’s Trying to Remember the Color of the Sky on That SeptemberMorning.” Speaker Series: The Stories They Tell. September 11 Memorial andMuseum. Recurrent (2015-2017)

“Art and Visual Narrative.” Invited Presentation. September 11 Memorial andMuseum Docent Program. May 2017

“Street art and the War on Terror.” Invited lecture. Wagner College. March 2017.

“Human Rights Museums, Social Movements, and Activist Pedagogy.” InvitedGuest Talk. Okanagan College, Canada. March 2017.

“Death and Dying at the September 11 Memorial and Museum.” InvitedSeminar. New York University. December 2015.

“Art and Contemporary Cultural Studies.” Invited Guest Lecture. University ofBritish Columbia. March 2015.

“Street Art, Media and the War on Terror.” Invited Guest Lecture. Universityof British Columbia.March 2014.

“Terror and Place in Monica Ali’s Brick Lane.” Invited Guest Talk andIntensive Research Workshop. London, England. July 2013.

“Orientalism, Nationalism and Representation in the 9/11 Visual Archive.”Invited Guest Lecture. University of British Columba. February 2013.

“9/11 and the Commodification of Children’s Culture.” Invited Public Talk.Kelowna Alternator Art Gallery. January 2013.

“9/11 and Children’s Media and Popular Culture.” Radio InterviewCanadian Broadcasting Corporation. Radio West. January 2013.

“Gender and the Visual Representation of Indigeneity.” Invited Guest Lecture.University of British Columbia. October 2012.

“Representation, Violence, and the Politics of Place and Identity.” InvitedGuest Lecture. University of British Columbia.

“Visual Discourse Analysis and the Framing of Suffering at Abu Ghraib.”Invited Guest Talk. Sociology Research Methods Symposium. University ofBritish Columbia. November 2011.

“Orientalism at the Movies: Touring Otherness in Sex and the City II.” InvitedPublic Talk. Equity and Diversity Graduate Speaker Series. University ofBritish Columbia. October 2010.

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