The Chicago Center for Contemporary Theory (3CT) is an interdisciplinary space for sustained, comparative discussion of social and political processes in the contemporary world. Founded in 2004 by seven faculty members from the Divisions of the Humanities and the Social Sciences, our collective has grown to include 16 fellows, enhancing the Center’s intellectual strengths and enabling imaginative collaborations across the disciplines of anthropology, English, history, political science, and sociology.
What We Do
3CT’s intellectual activities range from our signature lecture series, Theorizing the Present, to a program of research projects, teach-ins, book salons and one-off lectures and conferences – all of which aim to generate fresh insights while raising new questions about the commitments, conventions, potential openings, and structural contradictions animating the contemporary.
In addition to these programming elements, 3CT fellows are committed to teaching courses, and several sponsor ongoing student workshops. Fellows have also established two publications. One is an ethnographically oriented book series published by the University of Chicago Press, entitled Chicago Studies in Practices of Meaning, which has a list of 21 critically acclaimed books, with more in various stages of review. The second, Critical Historical Studies, is an interdisciplinary journal also published by the Press, featuring research on the implications of socio-economic transformations for cultural, political, and social change. CHS has just published its sixth volume.